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 Belinda Di Giambattista

NYU Stern Executive MBA Alumna Wins Prestigious Business Plan Competition

The NYU Stern Executive MBA program is proud to announce 2005 alumna Belinda Di Giambattista as the winner of the tenth annual NYU Stern Business Plan Competition. Belinda’s company Butter Beans, Inc. provides daily lunch meal services to K-12 school children as well as health and wellness education services. 

Prior to launching Butter Beans with co-founder Felicia Desrosiers, Belinda worked in financial services for more than ten years, most recently working at Moody’s Analytics for seven years. Belinda joined the Executive MBA program while at Moody’s to gain a richer understanding of how businesses operate. “I returned to school to take my career to the next level by acquiring formal business education to enhance my practical experience,” Belinda explains. At the time, she could not have guessed how the Business Plan Competition would figure so importantly in her professional life.

Belinda joined the competition in 2008 with a very different idea from the resulting Butter Beans, Inc. “There’s no quicker way to create a business plan,” Belinda states, noting that the “competition provides you with a fantastic schedule to get your business plan written and written well.” While developing her plan, Belinda sought help from former professors, now her coaches and mentors at Stern. Even after winning, she has continued to benefit from the helpful insight of Stern faculty, who support Belinda’s business in the marketplace as well as the classroom. “Professor Jeff Carr has offered tremendous support. We’ve greatly benefitted from his expertise in marketing and throughout the process he has asked us ‘what can I do to help?’” Belinda adds.

Among the many highlights of her experience as an Executive MBA student at Stern, Belinda recalls preparing for her final class presentation. She researched a company and gave a presentation providing recommendations for that company—an experience that has taught her how to analyze her own business management and make decisions that will enhance its growth. “Learning the art and science of how to communicate about your business gives you the ability to engage with a range of people, from investors to clients to the media. To be able to get another person excited about your business really takes things to the next level,” Belinda says.

In the long-term, Belinda envisions growing the local market for Butter Beans, optimizing her company’s kitchen, and expanding to other states. Belinda advises students who are interested in the Business Plan Competition to “leverage as many resources as you can in and out of Stern. Talk to anyone and everyone in order to help you make your plan the best it can be!”

Belinda Di Giambattista
Executive MBA, 2005

To learn more about Butter Beans, Inc., please visit Belinda at http://www.butterbeanskitchen.com/