Jan. 16, 2012—Community members are invited to a free presentation about how North Central College students are helping a local company export its products in China.
Students from the Entrepreneurship and International Business Organization (EIBO) invite the community to a presentation about how they developed an international export strategy for Naperville-based Itzy Ritzy, a juvenile and lifestyle products company. The presentation begins at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 1 in Smith Hall on the second floor of North Central’s Old Main, 30 N. Brainard St.
The presentation will appeal to local entrepreneurs, small-business owners, chamber of commerce members and others interested in learning about international exports, says Robert Moussetis, associate professor of international business.
Itzy Ritzy sells “exceptional and hip baby, toddler, and adult products designed with beauty, style, sophistication, function and fun in mind.” The company ships worldwide, and its customers include celebrity parents like Halle Berry, Nicole Kidman, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.
“We’ve been very impressed with the professionalism of the EIBO students and the quality of their work,” says Brian Douglas, Itzy Ritzy’s chief executive officer. “Our experience with the EIBO students investigating possible overseas opportunities as well as the several interns and full-time employees that the company has employed from North Central College continues to demonstrate the first-rate quality of the college and its students.”
EIBO students began working with Itzy Ritzy in spring 2011 as part of their studies.
“Itzy Ritzy already sells abroad; however, we suggested that they expand to China due to the increasing buying power of Chinese citizens and because they already manufacture their products there,” says junior Kelsey Brummel, a marketing major from Sheridan. “Also, as Itzy Ritzy is a baby products company, we suggested China because their consumers tend to spoil children and overbuy for babies.”
Brummel says the project has helped her apply the skills she’s learning at North Central to a real-world situation.
“I find myself using countless Itzy Ritzy examples in class that I have experienced while working with them,” she says. “The entire project gives a new emphasis on international business for me and really has added to the knowledge I have gained at North Central.”
Other students active with EIBO who helped develop the strategy are Katherine Hoekstra—a junior from St. Anne who is majoring in management—and Kaitlyn Rossi, a junior from New Lenox who is majoring in accounting.
“We suggest that Itzy Bitzy target the middle class that is willing to spend a majority on their income on their children,” Hoekstra says. “We believe malls are an effective place to access these customers and will ideally have distributors in Beijing and Shanghai where there is a growing middle class population that appreciates and desires luxury goods.”
EIBO fosters interests in international business affairs on campus and allows students to apply previous studies in business-related courses to a real-world international entrepreneurial project and to increase student awareness regarding the importance of studying abroad.
Entrepreneurship and small business management, international business, global studies, accounting, management and marketing are among more than 55 majors and minors offered at North Central College. In addition to the Entrepreneurship and International Business Organization, other business-related student-run groups active at North Central College include the American Marketing Association, Bulls and Bears Club, Student Accounting Society and Students In Free Enterprise.