What options and avenues do you have to explore entrepreneurship during your INSEAD MBA?

Did you know that approximately half of INSEAD graduates run their own companies at some point in their careers? Others join high growth ventures, lead entrepreneurial projects within corporations or focus on social ventures. So if you’re interested to explore these topics during your MBA, INSEAD is a great place to be!

Exploring Entrepreneurship During Your MBA
Exploring Entrepreneurship During Your MBA

Entrepreneurship courses

The INSEAD MBA portfolio of currently more than 15 entrepreneurship electives (offered P3 to P5) are designed so you can match the courses to your career goals. Whether you want to start your own venture from scratch, become a social entrepreneur, a corporate intrapreneur or a turnaround specialist — no matter what you have planned for your career track, you will find a suitable set of courses that will give you the tools you need for a successful start.

“More than 15 entrepreneurship electives are designed so you can match the courses to your career goals.”

In addition to the electives, in between periods we offer field trips that focus on building businesses in a particular region such as China, India, Russia or Silicon Valley. Led by INSEAD faculty, these trips offer great opportunities to meet with a wide variety of local executives and investors, as well as INSEAD alumni living and working in that region.

Extracurricular activities

The Rudolf and Valeria Maag INSEAD Centre for Entrepreneurship looks to promote entrepreneurial ambitions and activities within INSEAD. Three key activities under its realm are the Startup Bootcamp, the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EiR) programme and the INSEAD Venture Competition (IVC).

Startup Bootcamp

Offered over a weekend in P1, the popular Startup Bootcamp is an intensive and interactive training designed to test your appetite and jump-start the adventure. Many business ventures started by INSEAD MBAs were originally formulated in the Bootcamp and further developed in the various classes.

“The EiR programme gives you access to experts who can help.”

INSEAD (EiR) programme

The INSEAD (EiR) programme connects MBA students with experienced entrepreneurs — many of them INSEAD MBA Alumni themselves — in a personalised, one-on-one setting to discuss related topics. Whether you are planning to create a new venture or are actively working in ventures while pursuing your studies, the EiR programme gives you access to experts who can help to redefine your questions on the path to better answers, provide insights and work with you to solve problems. We currently have 90 entrepreneurs across both campuses who cover a wide range of domains and industries. In addition, there is also a virtual EiR programme that allows students to meet EiRs via Skype, thereby expanding the network all over the globe.

INSEAD Venture Competition

The IVC is a flagship event that must not be missed! Open to both MBA and Executive MBA (EMBA) participants, it is a dynamic, multi-stage competition where teams compete for cash prizes to support the development of their new ventures. IVC teams receive mentoring from successful alumni entrepreneurs along the way and pitch their ventures to seasoned investors. Created as a biannual event in 2000, the previous 33 competitions have produced many successful ventures, including BlaBlaCar and Prodigy Finance among others.

The people around you

INSEAD MBA students come with a wealth of experience, knowledge and ambition, from all corners of the globe. There is a lot of networking involved with students from the three intakes (the one you are affiliated to, plus the two that overlap before and after you). You will meet many students who have an entrepreneurial background whether they come from accelerators, VCs, fundraising or start-ups. These same people might one day make great advisors too! 

INSEAD Entrepreneurship Club

The student-run INSEAD Entrepreneurship Club (IEC) is one of the most happening clubs at INSEAD. They host speaker series, networking events and career treks as well as idea sharing and pitching sessions to provide support for students from the phase of business idea development and validation to actual business model implementation.

Collaborative working spaces

According to Compass’s Startup Ecosystem Ranking 2015 report, which has insights on the world’s top start-up territories, Singapore and Paris are among the Top 15 locations. In Singapore, in particular, you can access Block 71 right across the street from the campus. According to The Economist, it is “the world’s most tightly packed entrepreneurial ecosystem”, and hosts hundreds of start-ups and incubators. On the other hand, in Fontainebleau, a collaborative workspace called “The Mews” houses INSEAD’s aspiring entrepreneurs directly on campus, as a first step towards an incubator.

INSEAD Entrepreneurship Ecosystem

Finally, there is LaunchPad, a hub specifically for the INSEAD community and designed to help students and alumni to connect to each other as well as to other entrepreneurs, business leaders, researchers, angel investors, venture capitalists and philanthropists.

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