2017 Stanford Student Team: Cornell International Real Estate Case Competition

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One of pillars of SPIRE is to support and engage Stanford students in the fields of real estate, place making and the built environment. With SPIRE’s sponsorship, Stanford sent a student team to compete in the 9th Annual Cornell International Real Estate Case Competition in New York in November. Read their account of competition below:


In November,  the 2017 Stanford University team, consisting of Nikhil Aggarwal ('20), Udai Baisiwala ('18), Pakapark Bhumiwat ('18), Katherine Du ('21), Moom Janyaprasert ('18), and Marco Lorenzon ('20) participated in the 2017 Cornell International Real Estate Case Competition hosted in New York City. 

The competition was an intensive 5-day undertaking with the following process: case study, consisting primarily of an extensive financial modeling of the problem and a macroeconomic analysis, released on Thursday morning, the first presentation round of 15 minutes on Tuesday morning, and the final presentation of 15 minutes on Tuesday afternoon.

Under the guidance of SREC member Lydia Tan (MBA '91), the team was fortunate to have the opportunity to learn about commercial real estate financial modeling from industry experts during the preparation period. 

“In the six weeks leading up to the competition, our team met every Sunday with Lydia to discuss the fundamentals of real estate investment and to learn how deals are structured in the real world,” said Nikhil Aggarwal. “We practiced building models in both Excel and Python, hoping to have a template to use for the actual competition.” 

The Stanford team was able to differentiate themselves from other participants with the application of computer science to financial analysis. With a financial model in excel that fed into over 500 lines of python code that would then iterate through all of the possibilities and give the best possible solution, the team was able to produce one of the most extensive analyses in the competition. 

“Thanks to the support from SPIRE in both funding and connecting with real estate experts, all of us were able to have one of the best learning experiences in this competition,” said Moom Janyaprasert.

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