Hack the Pearl


Push yourself to discover what you can accomplish in 36 hours. Make new friends and gain new skills. You will have the chance to show companies what you are capable of. Companies will be recruiting the top contestants for internships.


Hack the Pearl will showcase some of the brightest students from around the world. Register early for free swag, food, and exciting prizes. Don't miss out! Applications close on April 17th and more information will be available soon.


We are accepting students from all backgrounds and majors, regardless of experience. All NYU Shanghai students will be allowed to participate. There will be workshops throughout the event for less experienced programmers.


Friday, April 19th

Time Event
17:00 - 18:00 Registration
18:00 - 18:30 Opening Ceremony
18:30 Hacking Begins / Dinner Served
19:00 - 19:30 Workshop "HSBC Data Science Q&A"
20:00 - 21:00 Workshop "From Zero to Model"
21:30 Day 1 Hacking Ends

Saturday, April 20th

Time Event
9:30 - Hacking Continues
Breakfast Served
10:30 - 12:00 Workshop
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch Served
14:00 - 18:00 Workshop
18:30 - 19:30 Dinner Served
20:00 - 21:00 Workshop
- 21:30 Hacking Ends

Sunday, April 21st

Time Event
9:30 - Hacking Continues
Breakfast Served
10:30 - 12:00 Workshop
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch Served
- 15:00 Recommended Time to
Start Preparing for Demo
- 16:00 Submissions Due
16:00 - 18:00 Showcasing and Judging
18:00 - 19:00 Closing Ceremony
19:00 - 21:00 Dinner Served



Leveraging an internal dataset provided by HBCN, together with any other external public data you think might be relevant and useful, your objective is to develop a predictive model to forecast a customer’s likelihood of subscribing to investment and insurance products in the following 3 months (i.e. from Jul to Sep 2018). You may choose to work individually or in groups of up to 3.

The competition will be divided into two rounds.

First Round Information

Date: April 19-21

During the first round, teams will be expected to fully develop their predictive models. Workshops will be provided to newcomers. At the end of the three days, each team will give a 5 minute demo on their process, and a quick glance at their results.

First Round Diversifiers and Prizes

  • Most Participation - most participation in workshops and “other” events
  • Most Exciting Data Analysis - aside from modeling the data and making the aforementioned probability results, also analyzes the data into something broader (e.g. getting rid of seasonality, what people are spending their money on)
  • Most Efficient Code - has the clearest and most optimized code

After the short demo, the winners of the diversifiers will be decided by a panel of judges on Sunday based on the above criteria. The top performing teams will receive an Intel Compute Stick and/or gift cards. Results of the teams moving onto round two will be provided a few days later.

Second Round Information

Date: TBA

After the first round, 5 teams will be selected as finalists for the second round. Selected participants will need to deliver a detailed presentation to HBCN senior executives to explain your modelling approach, insights, and any suggestions to deploy your model to help optimize the wealth business for HBCN. The presentation for each team should be within 10 minutes. Model accuracy and presentation performance will be assessed to select final winners.

Second Round Prizes

  • First Place Prize - The winning team will receieve a certificate and a 1,000 RMB e-coupon.
  • Second Place Prize - The winning team will receieve a certificate and a 500 RMB e-coupon.
  • Third Place Prize - The winning team will receieve a certificate and a 200 RMB e-coupon.

In addition, the 3 best performing individuals selected among all second round participants will be offered with HBCN internship opportunities in 2019.


Special thanks to HSBC and NYU Shanghai for hosting this event


NYU Shanghai has students from over 70 countries who study a variety of subjects. You will be able to observe how participants perform and decide if they are a good fit for your company.


This event is the perfect opportunity to reach out to new consumers. By attaching your name to Hack the Pearl, your company will be able to raise brand awareness and lead in education for technical development.


By supporting our event, you will receive a variety of benefits such as logo branding, access to project submissions, and presentation time. Click the link below for full information.

Our Amazing Team

The ones who make it all happen

Zane Fadul

Program Chair

Thomas Yee


Andrew Liu


John Liu


Lily Wang


Daniel Chin

Public Relations

Thomas Tai


Zi Jie Lu

Honorary Consultant

Kenton Blacutt

Web Development


A hackathon is an event in which programmers and others meet to collaborate on computer programming projects. We are looking for a large and diverse group of people to participate, from fields such as computer science, economics, business, data science, interactive media arts, and much more. There are no barriers to entry except a willingness to learn and experiment.
Nothing. Our sponsors and partners have graciously provided the funding to keep this event free for all students.
Don't worry! There will be workshops throughout the event for those who are inexperienced or new to programming. For those who have previous programming experience, we recommend that you brush up on your machine learning, modeling, and data analysis skills before the event.
The event will be held at the 15th floor colloqium in the NYU Shanghai academic building from April 19th to the 21st. Tables and chairs will be set up in advance, and power outlets will be available. Shuttle busses will run from residence halls to the academic building per the weekend schedule as usual.
Just bring yourself, a laptop and charger, and any other items that you may need for the day. We will provide food, a comfortable environment to work, extension cords, and plenty of drinks.
The event is run by students from Splice, Code for Good, and MUBO clubs at NYU Shanghai. We would also like to thank the student government, professors, and faculty for their support.
To be eligible for prizes, all projects must be completed within NYU Shanghai's academic building during the weekend. The dataset is property of HSBC and cannot be shared with anyone outside the school.
Please feel free to contact anyone on our team via email, wechat, or facebook. We are open to questions, suggestions, or other inquiries. If you require any special accomodations, let us know in advance and we will be happy to help.


Register as soon as possible! Applications will close on April 17th, 11:59PM Beijing Time

Do you have a team?
(2-3 people per team)

May be used by recruiters