When Michael Chisholm, Nha Ha, and Jedidiah Womack entered the Oregon MBA program, they didn’t expect to find themselves pitching the idea for an electric freight trailer startup in Thailand. But that is exactly where they found themselves from Feb. 8-10, 2018 at the SCG Bangkok Business Challenge at the Sasin Graduate Institute of Business.
The trio’s startup, Feros Freight Innovations (formerly Grit Trailer Supply), offers the freight industry a hybrid-powered trailer that reduces fuel cost and helps meet increasing regulations. By rethinking the trailer, Feros seeks to accelerate adoption of electric vehicle technology in freight applications and enable companies to transport freight cheaper, faster, and cleaner.
At the SCG Bangkok Business Challenge @ Sasin, Chisholm, Ha, and Womack earned a one of four spots in the finals by winning their track and $1,500. They also were among three teams selected as Sustainability Awards Finalists. Though the team of Oregon MBA students didn’t win the competition, they still walked away with Best Presentation and Best Business Plan awards for their group (each worth an additional $500 in prize money).
In all 20 teams of graduate students from universities around the world competed in the 2018 SCG Bangkok Business Challenge @ Sasin. The success of Feros Freight Innovations at this year’s competition continues a tradition of exceptional performance by Oregon MBA ventures at the event. Two years ago, Oregon MBA startup Animosa won the Bangkok Business Challenge and Oregon MBA team Corrosion Solutions won in 2012.
The SCG Bangkok Business Challenge started in 2002 to encourage students in graduate programs across the globe to become more entrepreneurial. Teams compete for the H.M. King's Award and the opportunity to win more $60,000 in cash prizes. The event was formerly known as the mai Bangkok Business Challenge.
Nathan Lillegard, instructor and program manager for the University of Oregon’s Lundquist Center for Entrepreneurship, traveled with the Feros team and served as faculty advisor.