IMD business school for management and leadership courses

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Venturing ecosystem

The Venturing Ecosystem Initiative works with startups, scale-ups, and other high-growth, high-impact initiatives to help them direct leadership, create a strategy, build in customer-centricity, and construct a resilient organization that delivers to its customers, employees, and shareholders. We are committed to creating thriving entrepreneurial ecosystems through our research and initiatives.

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2023 MBA Venture Award for clean water

A company that aims to provide global access to clean water through scalable and affordable technologies was selected as the winner of the 2023 IMD Venture Award. The award was made possible thanks to the generosity of Thierry Maupilé, CEO at ELEO Partners, who launched the award in 2022.

Jasper Schakel, an MBA 2023 candidate, and his business partner Erik Kraaijeveld won with Chemical Innovations in Water Industries (CIWI), a company that aims to facilitate access to the chemicals needed to treat water by harnessing the power of electrochemical engineering.

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“The venture award gave us the focus and drive to build our business case, and IMD gave us the knowledge and tools to excel at this task.”

Jasper Schakel, MBA 2023 

Our 26th startup competition

The annual IMD Startup Competition curates a list of promising Swiss ventures and selects those that receive support from our EMBA and MBA participants for their entrepreneurial projects.

2023 saw the 26th edition of the competition, and 29 winners were selected. Eleven ventures were chosen to collaborate with the Executive MBA classes, while 18 were selected to work alongside the MBA participants.

Ranging from the use of artificial intelligence in advertising campaigns to new fermentation techniques to produce eco-friendly food, the winning ideas were a rich showcase of proposed solutions in technology, sustainability, and healthcare.

Innovaud scale-up program welcomes second cohort

A joint initiative of IMD and Innovaud, 12 high-tech companies from a variety of industries joined the second cohort of the LeadiNNg to Scale-Up program in 2023.

The program is designed to propel tech companies from promising startups to fast-growing, international scale-ups. In 2023, it opened its doors to Vaud-based ventures and Swiss and international projects.

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“Participating in the LeadiNNg to Scale-up Program is a game-changer for SmartHelio as we strive to create a sustainable future through accelerating energy transition and combating climate change.”

Govinda Upadhyay, Founder and CEO of SmartHelio

A wealth of research – case studies, articles & insights

Our interactions with entrepreneurs and learnings about what it takes for a new venture to succeed inform our extensive academic research and case studies. Our team produced two case studies related to new ventures in 2023:

  • Drinkotec: Changing a company, changing a life (A): Daring to change
  • Green Motion: From entrepreneurial pioneer to multinational powerhouse

On the I by IMD digital hub, we inaugurated the ‘Tech for Good’ series of video interviews showcasing companies using technology to contribute to society. The hub also featured several of our articles on topics such as venture capital, networking, and how startups pivot.

Top 100 Swiss Startup Award

Once again, startups that have benefitted from the support and expertise of our EMBA and MBA participants were featured among the Top 100 most promising and innovative young ventures in Switzerland. Thirty-one of the top 100 Swiss startups in 2023 were IMD Startup Competition winners, two companies featured in the top 10, and five were in the top 20.

“It is very gratifying to see that so many of the ventures that have worked and collaborated with IMD have been recognized as among the best in Switzerland.” Jim Pulcrano, Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship and Management 

Among the other categories celebrated were the best scale-ups. To qualify, these fast-growing companies must have been operating for more than five years. Seven out of the 25 chosen had worked with our MBAs or EMBAs.