2,000 students from 60 countries participated in ‘Freshhh2012’, MOL Group’s international oil and gas industry competition

The ‘P.P.S.’ team of University of Miskolc (Hungary) has won MOL Group’s international oil and gas industry competition, “Freshhh2012”, the final of which took place in Budapest on 24 May 2012. The competition has now become widely known throughout the world and this year almost 2,000 students in three-member teams from 250 universities in 60 countries took part. The top 10 teams competed in the final for prizes worth EUR 20,000. MOL Group, which operates in more than 40 countries, also offers students international career opportunities in addition to prizes.

Péter Ratatics, Director - Corporate Centre, MOL Group commented: “I am very proud that MOL Group launched a competition in 2007 in which almost 8,000 students have participated from 67 countries’ universities. Besides making natural sciences more popular, MOL Group also aims to continuously improve its internationally-recognised expert knowledge and identify the new talent required by its succession management programme. Freshhh is an excellent tool for this.”

This is the sixth year that MOL Group has organised the international ‘Freshhh’ competition and the number of participants has almost doubled, compared to the first year of this event, 2007. Since its introduction, the “Freshhh” competition database has registered 7,904 students from 67 countries, in a total of 2,756 teams (including incomplete teams). As a result, MOL Group recruited almost half of the 150 Top 10 team members in various ways since 2007. MOL Group believes that more young talent from the 2012 contest’s participants will also join the Group.

 About the game:

In the first phase of the three-round competition, entrants had to compete in a virtual scenario, through the Internet. Participants had to solve industrial and strategic online MOiL Tycoon game tasksdeveloped by MOL, using computers. This was followed by a creative round in which the qualifying 40 teams had to prepare strategies related to unconventional gas production technology and create a script for a related short film. The jury, consisting of MOL Group experts, then evaluated the excellent inputs and selected the best 10 teams who were then invited to Budapest to take part in the final where teams had to present as well as “sell” their ideas on the creative round’s topic to the Jury and the Audience.

Four Hungarian, three Croatian, one US, one Russian and one Slovakian team qualified for the final in which, based on the international jury’s decision, the ‘P.S.S.’ team (University of Miskolc, Hungary) was awarded the EUR 9,000 first prize. The ‘MACC’ team from Budapest University of Technology and Economics (Hungary) won the second prize (EUR 6,000) while the ‘Reservoir Dogs’ team from Irish and Hungarian universities won the third prize (EUR 3,000). Members of the remaining seven teams received e-book readers as their reward. In addition, as was demonstrated in previous years, one of the objectives of Freshhh finalists was to build a career at MOL Group and this competition was the ideal first step along the road.

The “Freshhh” concept required an even more complex approach from the participants than ever before. The tasks, developed by specially appointed and volunteer MOL Group experts, were interrelated, whilst again proceeding along the oil supply chain.

The structure of this enjoyable industry-related simulation game and its modularity was appealing to and exciting for the target group, on the regional and international levels, as well. Due to web 2.0 applications e.g. Facebook, not only was it more interactive within each team but it is also generated  vivid info- and knowledge-sharing among the competing teams. The most discussion (e.g. comments, questions etc) took place on the contest’s Facebook page.  During the game, mostly expert oil industry specific competence and strategic thinking were measured by task and will be in following years’ contests.

The finalists and the jury