A Perfect Blend of Career Advice for the Wine and Spirits Industry

When the MBA’s Wine and Spirits Club organized its recent speakers’ event, the evening was nothing short of a perfect blend. Designed to give students deep insights into career opportunities in the industry, the event featured three panelists whose areas of expertise were vastly different.

Students who attended “Working in the Wine & Spirits Industry”

Consider Aurélien Valance, for example. Even as an HEC Paris student, Aurélian dreamt of working at Chateau Margaux. Now he’s Deputy Managing Director of the esteemed, five-centuries-old wine estate.

As Aurélien explained, having a career in the premier grand cru world is not only highly sought after, it is also rare. “In the end, most of the top estates are still family owned, and you simply don’t have that many jobs,” he said. Even though Chateau Margaux is a billion-dollar company, the estate employs only 81 people. Aurélien’s advice for breaking into such a select group? “Networking,” he explained, saying that the contacts he made as a member of HEC Paris’ Grand Cru Club eventually led to his current position.

The event featured the esteemed winery Chateau Margaux

The event featured HEC Alumni Aurélien Valance from Chateau Margaux

Providing a taste of life at Pernod Ricard was Florian Gansloser, the company’s Global Strategic Planning and Portfolio Manager. Florian’s advice for potential job seekers? “Wait for the right job in the right company,” he said, adding that working for the world’s second largest wine and spirits distributor offers great opportunities for advancement.

Topping off the evening’s event was moderator Aurelie Labruyére, founding partner of Vindême and a professor at HEC Paris specialized in wine marketing and culture.

After the formal presentation, attendees were treated to a networking event featuring great wines and the opportunity to chat with all three speakers.