Cranfield MBA Entrepreneur wins award
Eyal Ben-Cohen, an MBA graduate at Cranfield School of Management, has scooped first prize in the postgraduate category in the eighth annual Awards for Business & Management Students, run by the Association of Business Schools and sponsored by the world’s largest business applications company, SAP.
Eyal graduated from Cranfield in 2004 and was awarded a certificate and a winners’ cheque for £2,000 at the Association of Business Schools Annual Dinner.
Judges assessed Eyal’s entry which described how he started his own company, Verifile, to be the most impressive from all the postgraduate entries received. There are over 100 business schools in the UK and Eyal faced fierce competition from the many entrepreneurial postgraduate students who entered. Cranfield School of Management graduates scooped both awards in the postgraduate category as Eyal’s MBA colleague Paddy Radcliffe was awarded the runner up prize and a cheque for £500 for his company, Snowbone.
Eyal’s company, Verifile, uses an innovative online vetting system to combat CV fraud by detecting lies and inaccuracies on job applications. Checking CVs is a serious problem for employers - a problem which has seen many recent high profile scandals in the press.
Eyal drew up a business plan for the company as part of his MBA studies, secured financial backing from investors and won the Venture Capital Report Directory prize for producing the business plan most likely to succeed. Since then, Verifile has gone from strength to strength securing numerous clients including chartered accountants Mercer and Hole.
Verifile is the first company to move into the new Cranfield University Business Incubator Centre (CUBIC) which provides support services, workspace, and facilities for staff, students and graduates involved in business start-ups. Eyal and his staff have been based in the new centre since August.
Jonathan Slack, Chief Executive of the Association of Business Schools said: “The MBA is increasingly helping to develop successful entrepreneurs like Eyal - it gives them precisely the confidence and skills they need to develop a new company. ABS are delighted to honour his achievement with this award.”
Eyal Ben-Cohen, winner of the postgraduate Award for Business and Management, said: “Courses such as Business Start Up and Venture Capital on my MBA really helped me. What I learnt and the contacts I made at Cranfield have quite simply made Verifile a reality. I am thrilled to receive the ABS award and for the support the panel of judges have given me.”
Nicole Anderson, UK Director of Business Development, SAP, said: “This is an excellent competition which SAP is very pleased to be sponsoring. I was very impressed with the originality and clarity of many of the ideas presented throughout the essays. I wish every competitor the very best success for the remainder of their degrees and for their future careers.”
Martin Gollogly, UK Head of University Alliances, SAP, explained how they work with universities:
“The nature and scope of SAP provides a powerful and flexible resource to university faculty in the delivery of world-class business and computing education. Using SAP raises student interest, increases their nderstanding of the concepts being taught and enhances their employment prospects upon graduation. The University Alliance Program is unique in its scope, its size and as an illustration of how industry and academia can collaborate to enable young minds to fulfil their true potential.”