Archive for the ‘Dave Byrne’ Category
Best of luck to fledgling company Buzzoo who take on the best in Europe at the Europas on 22nd Jan. 2013. Buzzoo are made up of FT MBA 2012 alumns - Dave Byrne, Vishal Balasubramaniam, and David Pierce.
The Europas have been deemed the premier European awards for early, mid-, and late-stage technology start-ups, by leading investors and media. The Europas seek out the “hottest new start-ups in Europe, Middle East and Africa” and have previously recognised such household names as SoundCloud, Mind Candy, Spotify and Betfair.
Buzzoo made the shortlist for the forthcoming Europas start-up awards in Berlin on 22 January from more than 1,000 nominees that were put through the judging process. The nominees were judged by venture capitalists from firms like Kleiner Perkins, Accel and Google Ventures, as well as founders like Bebo’s Michael Birch, Cloudflare’s Matthew Prince and YouTube co-founder Jawed Karim, not to mention journalists from various tech news sites across Europe.
- Michael McDonnell, MBA Programme Manager
Excitement is building for the upcoming international class trips to China and Brazil. I was lucky enough to visit China a number of years ago at the end of a round-the-world backpacking trip with my wife, though it was a very different experience to the one that awaits us in March.
After 5 continents, 16 countries and 6 months of travel, the nomadic lifestyle had left me looking rather unkempt and quite different to my passport photograph.When we arrived from Hong Kong into Shanghai it took 20 minutes of suspicious examination and a second opinion from another border control official to convince them that I was in fact the person in the passport photo. By that stage of the trip my beard had me looking like a cross between Confucius and confused. Beards must be unusual in China as literally hundreds of people took my photo wherever we went– this really took some getting used to!
The Shanghai maglev train took us 30km into the city in a mere 7 minutes; it was a strange feeling to be travelling at 430 km/h on land.Shanghai is a very modern and impressive city. We had the pleasure of sharing hostel rooms with Chinese people which was a good way to learn more about their fascinating culture. After a great week there we left China to spend two weeks in Japan before finally returning to Beijing for the final leg of our trip.
Beijing is a sightseer’s paradise. Some of its highlights are the famous Tiananmen Square, the incredible Forbidden City, the amazing Great Wall and the quirky Tiantan Park, where locals enjoy everything from tai-chi to tango dance classes to taking their birds for a walk in their bird cages. Beijing is also a shopper’s paradise. For 6 months my wife and I had upheld a strict ban on shopping, partly because of our shoestring budget and partly because we needed to travel light. As Beijing was the last leg of our trip, we finally lifted that shopping ban.My wife drew her credit card like a samurai sword and charged at the shops with a crazed look in her eyes. I found her 10 hours later collapsed in exhaustion in a fitting room on Xiushui Street.
Last time we were backpacking on a shoestring budget and it was certainly a different experience. This time we will have 5 star hotels, a fantastic itinerary and a great crew of MBAs. This time we will be digging deep into Chinese business to learn what powers this country’s economic engine. This time we will be there for Paddy’s Day. This time it’s the year of the dragon. Bring it on!
- Dave Byrne, FT MBA 2011/2012
During our ‘Performance-Driven Marketing’ course we had the pleasure of working with the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) on marketing solutions within Dublin airport. This kicked off with an initial ‘design thinking’ brainstorming evening. Design thinking uses creative thinking-in-action design principles to solve management problems. Some of us are taking an optional course in ‘Design Thinking in Business’ next semester and are looking forward to exploring it some more. I knew that brainstorming with this bunch of MBAs would produce some pretty interesting and innovative ideas. I’ve previously seen the class make very short work of a task to come up with 100 uses for the paperclip, which included such innovative uses as lock-picking and creating snow shoes for mice. Their creativity would put MacGyver to shame. The marketing ideas generated were great and really showcased the wide variety of backgrounds in the class. Being a keen technologist (nerd), I pitched ideas involving smartphone interaction using geospatial location-based services.
To really understand how our ideas would work in the environment, a group of us arranged to take a trip out to Dublin airport to meet the client and get some additional inspiration. The security team at the airport run a tight ship and rightly so. Some of us discovered that, while a student card will get us a 10% discount in Boots, it’s not enough to get us through airport security. For our particular expedition we might need something more along the lines of producing a DNA sample or a signature from the pope, or solving a series of cryptic riddles. Once we got through security (well most of us) we were given a full tour of terminal 2. The economic timing may not have been ideal but terminal 2 really is a fantastic foyer to the country that we should all be very proud of. It’s great that the MBA gives us the chance to learn new ways of thinking and to apply what we’ve learned by working with organisations such as the DAA.
- Dave Byrne, FT MBA 2011/2012
D-day has finally arrived! This morning we have our Financial Reporting exam, the first of many that will test what we have learned from this comprehensive and intense curriculum.
Living in North County Dublin, my commute normally has echoes of the film ‘Planes, Trains and Automobiles’. I walk to the bus stop, get a bus into the city centre, walk to the train station, get a train to Blackrock and then cycle to the college. It’s a long and arduous trek but a small price to pay for attending a world-leading business school. Yes, the guys down the back of the bus give me funny looks when I use my laptop on the bus but I take every opportunity I can to tackle the workload. Today, however, I need to get in very early for some last minute study before the exam so I drive in by car instead. Read the rest of this entry »