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PepsiCo Mobile App Challenge

A Design and Innovation Competition: Making Wellness Fun through a Digital App Focused on Social Connectivity

two women in gym looking at phones

The Yale Center for Customer Insights (YCCI) is excited to partner with PepsiCo’s Advanced Personalized Ideation (API) Center on a new design and innovation competition that takes a deep dive and explores innovative ways of increasing engagement using a new digital app. Business school students from across the country are invited to register and submit their ideas to YCCI.

After academic and industry experts judge the Phase 1 abstract submissions, 8 finalist teams will be selected for Phase 2, which will include presenting virtually to PepsiCo executives for a chance to win the grand prize ($7,000).

The wellness trend has contributed to the development of over 300,000 mobile health apps globally, a number which has more than doubled with the increasing prevalence of smartphones.  Research shows that around 60% of Americans have now downloaded one or more of these apps, with over 42% downloading 5 or more apps

However, close to half stop using the wellness apps that they downloaded, and the majority fail to follow through with healthier habits, despite the recognition of the importance of wellness.

PepsiCo is developing a new wellness app and is interested in driving not only uptake but most importantly ongoing engagement  and interest with the app to help users achieve their health goals, big or small. PepsiCo's goal is to make wellness fun and create a social ecosystem.

The competition will be open to any teams of students who are registered in a full-time graduate business school program.  Yale Masters of Advanced Management students and executive MBA students are also welcome to apply.

Your challenge is to create a concept for a digital platform that harnesses social connectivity to inspire behaviors that promote wellness among PepsiCo's 1 billion daily consumers.  Specifically, you should address the 3 areas of wellness that PepsiCo is focusing on:  physical wellness (fitness and nutrition), emotional wellness, and mental wellness.

This can be a new concept or set of concepts that utilizes digital technology to inspire customers to engage where social wellness and connectivity are at the forefront, and the unintended consequence is improved overall wellness.  Think of people buying a pet and the unintended consequence of having to take it for regular long walks (physical activity) or how to make wellness fun.

Download the full case packet here.

  • Top 8 teams will present their ideas to senior leaders at PepsiCo and the Yale Center for Customer Insights. 
  • 1 Grand Prize-winning team will receive $7,000.
  • 2 runner-up teams will receive $2,000 per team.



The competition has three phases:

Phase 1A – Team RegistrationFill out a brief team registration in advance of abstract submission.  The deadline for registration is March 28, 2022 at 11:59pm ET.   

Phase 1B – Abstract Submission: Student teams should submit their abstracts by 11:59pm ET on March 31, 2022 at 11:59pm ET, based on the guidelines provided in the case packet. 

Phase 2 – Final Presentation: Eight teams will be selected to present their concepts to PepsiCo executives, YCCI leadership and Yale Executive Fellow Seth Farbman, former CMO of Spotify. Final presentations will be delivered virtually to the panel on April 29.

Application Information

Register your team  here.
Once registered, you may submit your abstracts here. 

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