WMC 2017

– The World Mining Competition –

— Canada’s first undergraduate mining-strategy case competition. —

The World Mining Competition (WMC)  was founded in 2012 by a group of made up of students from the University of Saskatchewan colleges of commerce (the Edwards School of Business) and engineering. The goal was to create a national competition that would allow likeminded students interested in commodities, natural resources, mining and mining engineering to come together and compete academically with one another in one of the most diverse case competitions in Canada. After three years, the competition formerly known as the National Mining Competition was not suited by its name – thus, in 2015, the World Mining Competition was born. Schools from Germany, India, The United States, The United Kingdom and across Canada have all come to this unique event judged by executive industry leaders to compete in one of the most challenging case competitions in North America. The World Mining Competition is student-ran and organized by undergraduate students from the University of Saskatchewan.

“Utilize the Past. Redefine the Future.”

Every Year, the World Mining Competition’s case must represent a theme prevalent within the current issues within the mining sector. This year, these issues are being represented by the theme, “Utilize the Past, Redefine the Future”. Not only is it important to celebrate past innovations, but within mining it is important to continue to use these expertise, skills and resources. Collaborative, combining different branches of knowledge to plan for the future.  Innovative, using forward thinking to develop new technologies/advancements in the field. Realistic, being aware of the current economic situation in both the Canadian and global mining industry to create a strategically sound approach. Turning challenges into opportunities is integral to the theme. The 2017 World Mining Competition exemplifies an industry where the future is dependent on past history and expertise, as well as current and future technology and innovations.

The case component of the World Mining Competition is the most extensive portion of the competition weekend. (but we’ll still have some rockin’ social events to keep you entertained!) The case is written and designed by KPMG LLP and the Organizing Committee. Extremely important, the case is VERY multi-disciplinary; we encourage prospective teams to combine students from various colleges OR have the skills amongst their team of the topics necessary to solve the case. These skills include but are not limited to: Capital Budgeting, Project & Business Valuation, Mergers & Acquisitions, Cost Modelling and Spreadsheet Modelling; and very important: Mining, Environmental, Geological and Chemical Engineering. Other important topics to cover include Human Resources Management and Operations Management. We (the Organizing Committee) encourage teams to practice and get to know one another well-enough beforehand so you can identify your strengths and weaknesses going into the case.
For those that have not competed in an Academic Case prior to the World Mining Competition, Case Resolution is the time given to teams to solve the case and prepare their final presentation. From the point the case is received until its submission deadline is the entirety of the Case Resolution. The World Mining Competition has a case resolution of 36 hours – from the second day of the competition until submission in the evening on the third day. Please read the competition rulebook (under Resources) for further information on what resources can be used during Case Resolution as some personal resources may be prohibited during the competition weekend.
During the resolution, events called Academic Challenges may occur – which may or may not cause the information in the case to change. Academic Challenges are NOT amendments to the case, rather they are scheduled (or surprise) events that delegates will be called to participate in regarding the case. Academic Challenges can be events that will allow delegates to gather and consult for valuable information that may assist in solving the case, or they can be challenges that may impact the recommendation that delegates will deliver during their final presentation. Academic Challenges at WMC vary from year to year, so be weary that not all challenges are equal!
Upon the deadline for the submission of Case Resolution, delegates must turn over their PowerPoint file for Final Presentations to the Organizing Committee (at a specified time and location). This file cannot be modified and will be the presentation file used for BOTH Preliminary and Final Presentations. These presentations are judged by industry professionals, who are briefed by the OC on how presentations are to be scored and structured. Teams will present in intervals to the panel of judges, while all other teams must remain in Isolation (a waiting room usually filled with snacks and games). Upon completion of Preliminary Presentations the top 5 (may vary depending on the number of competing teams) will compete in the Final Presentations. These presentations are judged by the CFOs and CEOs of some of the largest international mining companies. Past judges include the CEO and CFO of PotashCorp, the CEO of Cameco, the CEO of K+S Potash, Partners in Natural Resources from KPMG, and many more. Delegates will be given a list of the biographies of judges prior to the competition for convenience.
While the case may be the biggest portion of the weekend, there are tens of opportunities to network and have a good time in Saskatoon! A networking fair will be held on the first evening of the competition; social events at pubs and other venues will be held every evening; networking events will pop up numerous times throughout the weekend; and the Awards Gala is an excellent time to get to know some of the judges and industry present at the competition! Competitors in the past have walked away with career opportunities and connections to jobs that can exclusively be found by competing at this unique event!