Ever since its creation 50 years ago, the HEC Paris MBA has brought together some of the most talented, diverse and visionary individuals in the world and paved the way for them to become true leaders.
While the MBA program is among the world’s top-ranked schools because of its extensive management training and its ability to enable career transformation, alumni look back on the HEC Paris MBA as a profoundly enriching experience, one that motivates them to go the extra mile. Here we showcase one HEC Paris MBA alumni from each decade of our existence, highlighting their lasting impact on the global business world.
Jean-Louis Borloo (MBA ’76)
Current position: Retired politician
Political career: Jean-Louis Borloo began his career as a lawyer in the 1980s, was elected mayor of Valenciennes, France, as an Independent, then was elected to the European Parliament (1989-1992)
Notable projects: He introduced a 5-year plan of social cohesion, centered around 3 axes: equal opportunity, housing and employment during his time as Minister for Employment, Social Cohesion and Housing (2005-2007) during Jacques Chirac’s presidency.
He subsequently became Minister of the Economy and Finance in François Fillon’s cabinet (2007), and then Minister of State for Energy, Ecology and Sustainable Development (2007-2010) during Nicolas Sarkozy’s presidency. Most recently, he created the Union of Democrats and Independents (UDI) in 2012 seeking to unify all of France’s Centrist parties.
Perrine Pelen (MBA ’88)
Industry: International Sports
Current position: Head of the Organisation Committee for the International Ski Federation Alpine Ski World Championships 2023
Achievements: 15-time World Cup alpine ski race champion, 3-time Olympic medalist at the Lake Placid 1980 and Sarajevo 1984 Winter Games, served on the Marketing Team of the International Olympic Committee for the 1992 Albertville Winter Olympics
About the MBA: “The time I spent at HEC proved to be a real turning point in my life. I felt that it was important to rub shoulders with individuals as passionate as I was about competitive sports, but in an entirely different sphere. We’d build on each other’s knowledge and work like crazy for group projects. I not only acquired business skills, but also an entirely new vision.”
Michel Vounatsos (MBA ’90)
Current position: CEO of Biogen Inc.
Previous experience: Leader of the global primary care business unit at Merck, a German multinational pharmaceutical, President for Primary Care Business Line and Customer Centricity divisions at Merck (2012-2016)
Biogen Inc. is an American multinational biotechnology company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, founded in 1978. The company specializes in the discovery, development and delivery of therapies for the treatment of neurodegenerative, hematologic and autoimmune diseases to patients around the world. Biogen has united some of the world’s best neurologists and neuroscientists to further medical research with a particular focus on neurological diseases.
Patrick Pruniaux (MBA ’05)
Industry: Luxury Watches
Previous experience: Vice-President Global Sales & Retail at TAG Heuer (2010-2014), Special Projects Senior Director at Apple, working on Apple Watch’s launch (2014-2015)
Patrick’s insights into providing value in the luxury industry: “I’m very proud of the fact that, at Ulysse Nardin, we’re not a marketing company, we’re not driven by marketing. We’re first driven by the fact that we manufacture watches. Marketing is here to expand what we’re doing, it’s not here to drive the whole story…I strongly believe this is a very contemporary way to build and sell luxury today. I think it holds more value over time and has more interest to the consumer.”
Barbara Calvi (MBA ’18)
Industry: Finance and Sustainability
Current position: Sustainable Finance Associate at Morgan Stanley
Previous experience: Barbara joined the HEC Paris MBA with a very international profile, having lived and worked in 10 countries, including: Italy, Spain, Tanzania, Senegal, Uganda, Burundi, Congo DRC, Macau, United States and Canada. Before the MBA, she was a Finance and Market Consultant at the World Bank Group in Tanzania (2016).
“Pre-MBA I came directly from the International Development sector, so my objective was to go back to the private sector, but retaining a focus on sustainability and development. So, I looked for opportunities in investing in sustainable finance, and that’s ultimatly where I landed. I now work in an investment bank, focusing entirely on sustainable finance, products, and solutions.”
About the MBA: “The MBA is a great experience to learn more about ourselves, and to benchmark ourselves against our peers. We all come from different backgrounds, have had several years of experience in a work environment, but at the same time, coming together with such a diverse group allows us to learn and really test out our core skills, especially soft skills like leadership and teamwork.”