First Prize : $5,000 cash

Second Prize : $3,000 cash

Third Prize : $1,000 cash

Registration Period : Now till 5th December 2016

Submission Period : 12th - 16th December 2016 (12 noon)

Finals : 15 January 2017. Finals will take place in Singapore Expo, Max Atria

Registration has closed.
Watch out for the challenge again next year!

About The Challenge

You wear them, the Crizal lens on your eyewear. Essilor International is the world’s leading ophthalmic optics company behind the Crizal, Transition, Varilux lens and the company is powered by a unique owner-oriented corporate culture with its inclusive plan to enable 50% of employees worldwide become shareholders, compared to 20% currently. Its share price has compounded 2,000% since 1986.

You touch them, the ASSA Abloy system for your door. ASSA Abloy AB, the global leader in innovative door opening solutions to improve our lives through security, safety and convenience, is up 10,000% since 1994.

You cook with them – peep inside a professional kitchen and you can find a Rational intelligent cooking system on a Norwegian submarine, a Saudi prince’s yacht, as well as in hospitals and restaurants around the globe. Rational AG commands a global 54% market leadership in the world’s professional kitchens that include the Buckingham Palace and the White House, and is behind the success of such famous culinary names as Gordon Ramsay. Rational AG is up 1,000% since 2000.

You may even use them in emergency care situations, the Ambu bag for manual resuscitation in hospitals, by ambulance services – in fact in all kinds of emergency environments all over the world. Ambu A/S, the company whom millions of patients and healthcare professionals worldwide depend upon the functionality and performance of its products, is up 6,000% since 1992.

Essilor, ASSA Abloy AB, Rational AG and Ambu A/S are the successful yet relatively low-profile Hidden Champions who are focused market leaders in sophisticated, hard-to-imitate niche products and valuable critical niches that are largely invisible to the average consumer yet are indispensable to our well-being in daily life. From a value investing perspective, investing at an earlier stage in the long-term growth trajectory path of these Hidden Champions - in Asia - should prove rewarding.

The Challenge is held within the 6th Value Investing Summit (VIS) 2017.

We have assembled an expert judging panel of highly-respected professional institutional investors and fund managers to assist in determining the winning team. 4 varsity teams will be selected to present to the expert panel and the 1,600-strong audience. Contestants will be judged on the merits of the investment thesis and the depth of research.

To assist your team in formulating stock research ideas, take time to go through the following resources to guide your submissions.

1. Our Assessment Sheet

2. Investment strategy: Hidden Champions: Our North Star Investment Strategy to Navigate Turbulent & Fragile Markets (8I Holdings, 2016 Year-End Letter)

3. Investment strategy: Investing with conviction to outperform in times of volatility and uncertainty (8I Holdings, Interim Report, Pg 10-14)

4. Scouring accounting footnotes to prevent tunnelling (The Business Times, Pg 27, 19 Aug 2015)

 Looking forward to your submissions!

Why Take Part?

This unique platform and opportunity in the Challenge provides an alternative outlet for your analytical skills and intrinsic talent beyond the GPA number to be recognized by the global business and investment community and marketplace and to gain exposure to some of the most notable minds in the investment industry.

This is a chance to present your analysis to a panel of knowledgeable investments analysts and highly-respected professional investors. Obtain feedback from professionals and enhance your investment skills at the same time.

Buffett is now the one of the world’s most admired and revered business leader and has built his firm Berkshire Hathaway into a $350-billion-market-cap conglomerate, more valuable than the GDP output of Singapore. We look forward to your submission and participation in the Inter-Varsity Stock Research Challenge – “Unearthing Hidden Champions”!

Schedule of Events

Some guiding questions for inclusion in both the written report and presentation slides:

(1) What is the background of the Hidden Champion? What is your one-sentence investment thesis?

(2) What makes it a wide-moat business? Why do you think the business model is unique, scalable and that it gets easier as it gets bigger?

(3) What is the corporate culture, management quality and shareholding structure like?

(4) Why do you think the market value of the company can double in the next 3-5 years?

(5) What are your top 3 dislikes? What are the toxic factors?

Rules and Regulations

  1. All team members must be from the same university.
  2. Each team should consist of at least 2 members, with a maximum of 3. Please also indicate team leader name.
  3. Only one entry will be accepted per team.
  4. The registration deadline for teams is 5th December 2016.
  5. The Entry Submission deadline is 16th December 2016, 12 noon. Entries received after the deadline will not be considered.
  6. Each team may submit ONE company for this challenge. The company must be a public-listed company in the Asia-Pacific region with a market capitalization between US$50 million and US$10 billion as at 31 October 2016.
  7. The Asia-Pacific region markets include Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, India and Japan.
  8. The written report must be submitted with the Calibri font and font size 11 with no spacing between the lines of text or paragraphs. Both the written report and presentation slides must be submitted in the form of PDF.
  9. The research thesis must align with the theme of “Unearthing Hidden Champions”. That means finding and analyzing businesses with
    • wide and durable economic moats that generate superior returns on invested capital;
    • unique, scalable business model with indestructible intangible know-how to create new categories of growth
    • a long runway to compound growth; and high-integrity, owner-oriented management teams.
  10. The judges' decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  11. 8I Education (S) Pte Ltd reserves the right to amend these rules and regulations at any time without any prior notice.

For further questions, please direct them to