Business school students take on innovation challenge

Be a problem solver for an international multi-billion company.

Follow their story with us and see how you could take on something similar through Student Enterprise

MSc student putting theory into practice.

Chonthicha Niltrakarnkun (Sea), Thanida Akkavutwanich (Benz), Wendy Suwankijkorn, and Jiaxin Wong, four Surrey Business School students, took the opportunity for the consulting project with CarabaoEnergy Drink UK as part of the MSc program took their chance to apply for a Consulting project between Surrey Business School and Carabao Energy drink UK.  Here’s what they had to say about the project:

Tell us about the project you are working on?

Jiaxin-  As part of our studies, we have the opportunity to interact with companies to practice the skills we learn in the classroom.  Carabao UK, part of an international drinks company, is an example.  We are advising them on their digital marketing strategy which relates to modules in our programs for Digital Marketing, Digital Project Development, and New Business Venturing.

What are the benefits of working on a real-life business project

Sea- There is no more rewarding experience than working closely with project managers in companies in a role where we actually influence their decision-making and see our ideas come to life.  With Carabao UK, we developed a number of proposals individually and as a group which was reviewed internally before they decided to implement our proposal for a flash sale with promotion codes.  We learn first-hand about the decision-making in large companies.

Benz- As students, we were given the room to fail which is essential for the creative process.  Working with Ricky Laub-Turner, UK Business Development Manager, and his team has been an amazing experience where they have shown a genuine interest in our ideas and supported us at every step along the way.  They have been great mentors while we have learned a lot about the industry.

What have you learned from the experience so far?

Wendy-  We have learned how to react and respond in a fast-moving dynamic work environment.  In some cases, we have worked hard on proposals which have been scrapped at the next meeting so we can devote our energies to new tasks as business decisions are made.

Jiaxin- In the classroom, I learn the theory about business while I now have an opportunity to apply this knowledge in an actual business setting to help a business develop digital strategies.   This improves my understanding of how business works in practice.

Sea- “The key to effective collaboration with a company is regular communication and be proactive.In turn, data and data analytics is key to decision-making in a real-time setting. We discuss ideas openly, try to identify the risks and how we can manage them, and also look at the opportunities to see how we can leverage them further.”

Benz —“Another advantage of the project is that it helped me understand the importance of teamwork and how effective teams work.  We practice teamwork in our academic program but we see how it actually makes a difference for a business.”

What have you enjoyed about the project?

Sea — “The company allows us to think outside the box and propose unconventional ideas but, at the same time, expect to see the ideas supported by data and data analytics.  The process is rigorous but the Carabao team takes these proposals seriously too which is really great.”

Benz — “A company support that we get along the way is invaluable for entering the workplace. The knowledge we get from this experience is something that no book can give us.”

Wendy — “Being able to understand and work with professionals that have high standards and great visions make me think about the future, and reflect on who I am now and who I want to be in the next few years.”  It helps my personal and professional growth.

Jiaxin — “The skills of each team member complement the others so we can maximize our effectiveness by knowing and respecting each other, building good communication, and supporting each other at all times.”

Although Student Enterprise is known for supporting Entrepreneurship, we are really pleased to encourage this group of MSC students to use their knowledge to innovate within a company. This “intrapreneurial” approach is something Student Enterprise will be promoting more in the coming year, with a brand new opportunity this Autumn to get involved with some local SMEs & charities as an “intrapreneur”. If you want to work with local businesses, meet other students with bright minds and entrepreneurial spirit, and solve innovation challenges yourself, you can sign up for more info here.

Now for some Summer fun… Sea and her business school colleagues would like to share a great deal with YOU! 

There will be a Flash sales 2 for 1 offer for Carabao Energy drink (Pack of 12) for ANYONE who buys on 24th-31st August through Carabao website .

In addition, enter code SBS3 and join a chance to win a £10 LOVE2SHOP voucher.

Grab it now and cool down the summer heat!

Buy NOW |

For full terms and conditions of the offer please visit