2023 CoMIS Competition

Following the success of our return to an in-person competition format in 2022, we were extremely eager to welcome our competitors back to the Carlson School of Management from March 28 - 31. This year, we had 16 schools from around the world share their ideas, network, and experience the Twin Cities.


24-Hour Case

This year's case was provided by Life Floor, a Minneapolis-based company offering customized slip-resistant flooring and tiles designed for aquatic centers. The case was delivered to competitors on Thursday morning. Competing teams were then given 24 hours to deliberate and develop their solutions before presenting to judges on Friday morning. Competitors were given the challenge of finding creative solutions for streamlining Life Floor's project proposal and quoting process. Life Floor's CEO summarized the challenge with this question: "How can [Life Floor] do this better, faster, in a more automated way, in order to scale the company and increase profitability without hiring more people?"

Teams were divided into 4 rooms for the 24-hour preliminary round with 4-5 teams presenting in each room. After presenting to the judges, teams who placed first in their rooms were admitted to the Final Round while second-place teams moved on to the Lightning Round.

See a summary of results here:

New Teams
This year, we introduced new teams that would only compete in the 24-hour preliminary round: an alternates team and 2 shadow CoMIS teams. The alternates team consisted of alternate competitors from various schools. These competitors met, deliberated, and presented their impressive solutions all within 24-hours. Meanwhile, the shadow CoMIS teams consisted of the Carlson school's own case team. These new teams gave alternate competitors and CSOM's very own competitors the opportunity to practice their skills and receive valuable feedback from the judges. We were so glad to hear that both competitors and judges enjoyed these new additions, and we hope to continue developing and improving CoMIS every year.

Preliminary Round Results

First Place TeamsUniversity of ConnecticutCorvinus University of BudapestUniversity of Texas-AustinGeorgia State University
Second Place TeamsUniversity of ManitobaUniversity of ArizonaPenn StateWashington University in St Louis


Lightning Round

The Lightning Round tests teams on their understanding of the case and their ability to apply their knowledge. Of the four competing teams, only one team progresses into the final. The Lightning Round proceeds as follows:

  • Four questions are asked by the moderator 
  • After each question, teams are given 2 minutes in breakout rooms to deliberate and provide an answer
  • Teams are given up to 1 minute to respond, in turns
    • Only one competitor can share their team's response.
    • Each competitor from each team must respond to at least one question.

After a very close competition, Washington University in St Louis claimed the final spot in the final round.


Final Round & The Zap Factor

In the final round, competitors are given the Zap Factor. This is a unique business problem that is given to competitors right before their final presentations. Competitors were given 1 hour to analyze and integrate this problem into their solution before presenting to the final judges.

This year, the Zap Factor was as follows:
"In addition to learning about innovative aspects of your solution, we hope you will also share:

  • Any specific innovation techniques you used to develop your solution.
  • Actions we can take today to ensure our Quotes and Proposal processes are future-looking, innovative, and maybe a little wild and crazy.

Today's winning proposal will emphasize innovation with constraints throughout."


Five incredible presentations and one difficult deliberation later, judges selected the following winners:

FirstUniversity of Texas at Austin
SecondCorvinus University of Budapest
ThirdUniversity of Connecticut

We extend our deepest appreciation and gratitude for all our competitors, coaches, judges, speakers, volunteers, and sponsors for their gracious contributions to CoMIS 2023.

We can't wait to see how our competition continues to grow next year; we hope to see you all again!