Cornerstone Capital Issues A Call to University Students Offering a $25,000 Prize to Launch the “Business of the Future,’ seeking fresh ideas that combine profit with purpose
NEW YORK, February, 24 2015 – Cornerstone Capital Inc., together with the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), RobecoSAM and the UN Principles for Responsible Management in Education (PRME), today announced a call for university students to participate in “Sustainable Games: The Business Model Challenge.” Applicants are invited to submit business plans for new companies that can help solve some of the world’s most pressing challenges in scalable and profitable ways – “Social Enterprises.”
The grand prize, to be awarded in 2015, is $25,000 along with mentorship opportunities and tools to help launch the winning business.
“Our hope is that Sustainable Games will ignite the imagination and entrepreneurial spirit of thousands of students around the world to collaborate towards a better future for capitalism,” said Erika Karp, Founder and CEO of Cornerstone Capital Inc. “Our goal is to energize students, tomorrow’s leaders, to make an impact on the health of our planet, our society and our future as we work to better finance global prosperity.”
“We are extremely excited to see the competition go live,” said Michael Baldinger, CEO of RobecoSAM, one of the world’s largest asset management firms focusing on Sustainability Investing, whose data powers the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices. “As a sponsor, we are convinced that the brightest talents around the world will generate new business models that create shared value. Let the Games begin!”
The competition was declared as a Cornerstone “Commitment to Action” at the Clinton Global Initiative’s 2014 Annual Meeting. “CGI is happy to support this Commitment to ‘Sustainable Games’ and encourage investment in new enterprises helping to shape the future of capitalism,” said Bulbul Gupta, Head of Market-Based Approaches at Clinton Global Initiative.
“Sustainable Games: The Business Model Challenge” aims to accelerate market-ready solutions that reflect a value inherent in the systematic understanding of today’s Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) imperatives.
Students are asked to form teams of 3-5 members to be eligible to compete. All teams must select a Domain from Cornerstone Capital’s “Sustainable Domain Bank” designated for use in this contest. The domain will be the basis for developing the business models, which must align with Cornerstone Capital’s vision for a more regenerative and inclusive form of capitalism.
In launching the competition, Cornerstone is working with PRME Chapters from across the globe to support the Challenge by reaching out to students on more than 600 university campuses in 12 regions. “We are excited to partner with Cornerstone Capital in the first edition of Sustainable Games,” said Jonas Haertle, Head PRME Secretariat. “This Business Model Challenge is a great way for students in business schools around the world to put theoretical knowledge into practice and develop a business model which creates sustainable value — that is value for multiple stakeholders. We are encouraging PRME Chapters worldwide to promote this Challenge.”
Beginning in June, contest judges will select the top concepts from among all entries and match those teams with a mentor chosen from Cornerstone’s global network of industry and financial executives as well as sponsor representatives. Finalists will spend the next two months refining their proposals, and in Fall 2015 compete for a chance at the $25,000 grand prize before a judging panel and potential investors.
Registration for the Challenge is now open, and all entries must be received by May 18, 2015. For more information visit: www.sustainablegames.com and follow competition updates on Twitter at @SustyGames and on Facebook.
More About Cornerstone Capital Group
Founded in 2013, Cornerstone Capital Inc. is a woman-owned financial services firm based in New York offering investment banking and strategic consulting and, in the near future, investment management capabilities. The mission of the firm is to bring the discipline of sustainable finance to the mainstream of the capital markets. With the systematic analysis of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in the investment process, the Cornerstone Capital Group advises both investors and corporations on how to optimize their financial and business decision-making processes. Cornerstone’s Board of Directors, Global Advisory Council and Staff partner with organizations including the World Economic Forum, the Clinton Global Initiative, the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board, and the Principles for Responsible Investment to work towards collaboration and transparency in the global capital markets.
More About Our Sponsors
Founded in 1995, RobecoSAM is an investment specialist focused exclusively on Sustainability Investing. It offers asset management, indices, engagement, voting, impact analysis, sustainability assessments, and benchmarking services. Together with S&P Dow Jones Indices, RobecoSAM publishes the globally recognized Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI). Approximately 130 professionals work for RobecoSAM, which is headquartered in Zurich.
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), an initiative of the Clinton Foundation, convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 180 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prize laureates, and hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations and NGOs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date, members of the CGI community have made more than 3,100 Commitments to Action, which have improved the lives of over 430 million people in more than 180 countries.
The Principles for Responsible Management Education(PRME) is a United Nations Global Compact sponsored initiative with the mission to inspire and champion responsible management education, research and thought leadership globally. The Six Principles of PRME are inspired by internationally accepted values and provide an engagement structure for academic institutions to incorporate sustainability into curricula and research. Beyond the Principles, this “network of networks” is a vibrant learning community that supports continuous improvement at the global and local level. At the regional level, the PRME Chapters are platforms that advance the Six Principles of PRME within a particular geographic context, performing an important role in rooting PRME within different national, regional, cultural and linguistic contexts, and facilitating the growth and engagement of PRME with respect to implementing the Six Principles.