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Peruvian Teens Win Junior Achievement Student Company of the Year Competition
For Immediate Release:
PERUVIAN Teens Win 2009 LATIN American
Awards also presented for social responsibility and leveraging international trade concepts.
Colorado Springs, Colo. – On Saturday night in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Junior Achievement crowned “Le Truffe” — a team of teen entrepreneurs from Lima, Peru — the winners of the 2009 Latin American JA Student Company of the Year Competition sponsored by FedEx.
Le Truffe was comprised of Junior Achievement students from Colegio Santa Maria Marianistas —and bested 18 other student companies by demonstrating superior performance and innovation. The company made chocolate truffles called “DeliTruffas.” The recipe included a “100% Peruvian” ingredient—“abstract of algarrobina,” from trees grown in northern Peru, and encouraged the maintenance of forests and ecological responsibility. The company recycled all discarded paper and plastic material and used the proceeds to support educational scholarships for disabled children. Le Truffe targeted their product to Internet shoppers, TV viewers, customers at two major malls, and friends and family.
Second place was taken by “Del Huerto” (“From the Garden”), of Villa Maria School, also from Lima. The JA student company produced a pickled vegetable mixture called El Rocotito, made from rocoto (Peruvian hot peppers), onions, Worcestershire Sauce, olive oil, lemon, oregano and other spices. Del Huerto utilized locally grown resources and donated part of its profits to Operación Sonrisa, a non-profit organization that provides free reconstructive and plastic surgery for low-income children who were born with a cleft palate.
Third place was won by “Cargosas” from Quito, Ecuador. They produced a reusable tote bag made out recycled plastic bags, available in three different designs.
The competition, co-sponsored by HP, is Junior Achievement’s inaugural celebration of the accomplishments of JA Company Program students, ages 15-19, in Latin America. The finalists showcased their enterprise and business acumen before a panel of independent judges who evaluated each company’s performance against the competition criteria, which includes an annual report, a four-minute business presentation before an audience, a trade booth display, and a final interview with the judging panel. One of the competition’s goals is to measure each team’s business achievements with members’ individual personal development and knowledge.
Eligibility for the 2009 Latin American JA Student Company of the Year Competition was limited to qualifying student teams that completed JA Company Program™ during the 2008-2009 academic year. During JA Company Program, students start and run their own businesses with support from a local business volunteer. Students devise their product and then market it, with the objective of realizing a profit for shareholders. The program currently impacts 360,000 students a year globally.
Other awards presented at the competition included the FedEx Global Access Award, won by Cargosas Quito. As evaluated by a special FedEx jury, Cargosas Quito presented the best business plan incorporating concepts related to international trade, resource management, environmental sustainability and global market expansion.
The HP Responsible Business Award, also presented at the Latin American JA Student Company of the Year Competition, was won by “Ecoviña,” from The German School of Valparaiso, Viña del Mar-Valparaiso, Chile. The company produced handmade greeting cards made from recycled paper, and also taught local primary-school students about the importance recycling. A special HP jury evaluated the student companies based on the award criteria of financial performance, social responsibility, environmental excellence and innovation and awarded HP mini notebook computers to Ecoviña.
“This competition is an exciting opportunity for Junior Achievement student entrepreneurs to demonstrate the teamwork, leadership and innovative thinking that will help them drive success in the business world,” said Sean C. Rush, president and chief executive officer of JA Worldwide. “They also have the opportunity to create connections and share ideas with other JA students, while learning the value of responsibility and the pursuit of excellence as they build business—and personal—success. Our sponsors FedEx and HP are helping to empower students to reach high levels of business excellence—and share these skills with the world.”
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