Finalists named in First Pitch Business Competition

Winners to be announced at MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference

How do you grow the business of a live streaming product that's already revolutionized the way fans consume sports in a digital age? How do you enhance an app that's already personalized ballpark experiences for nearly a million users?

Well, that's what business school is for.

The 2013 First Pitch Sports Business Case Competition presented by MLB Advanced Media opened on January 25, offering teams of undergraduate and graduate business students the opportunity to compete in a dynamic learning experience and gain unique insights into key business challenges.

MBA students were tasked with analyzing the business model for MLB.TV, which has provided users with more than 1.5 billion live game streams since launching in 2002 and saw 40 percent growth in subscribers during the 2012 season. How can MLB Advanced Media continue to grow both subscribers and revenue for its flagship product given the current market demographics and economic climate?

Undergraduates examined potential new business opportunities within MLB.com's At The Ballpark mobile app, which allows fans to access offers, rewards, exclusive content and more right from their seats at all 30 Major League ballparks.

Now the demand curves have been shifted, the regression models have been interpreted and three teams of finalists have been named for each category.

MBA candidates from the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College and the Columbia School of Business, along with undergraduate business students from Ohio University, Laurentian University and Queens University, will have the opportunity to present their findings to an expert panel at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston on March 1-2.

The winning team for each category -- to be named during the conference, based on depth of research, analytical rigor, creativity, and thoughtfulness of recommendations -- will receive a cash, a prize package and subscriptions to various MLB.com products.