Becoming an entrepreneur as a student or an Executive Education participant at ESSEC means entering through the front door into the ecosystem of startups and innovation financing.
ESSEC, a academic driving force behind this ecosystem, maintains close relationships with key players in France and on its campuses in Africa and Asia: accelerators, venture capital funds, consultants, Business Angels networks, etc.
ESSEC, a talent factory
Our strategic partnerships in entrepreneurship with leading academic institutions such as CentraleSupélec, position us at the forefront of technological and societal revolutions that allow the emergence of new players in value chains undergoing profound transformation. Digital, Artificial Intelligence, environmental and social emergencies, ... are as many fault lines along which ESSEC trains its students to identify opportunities for innovation and transform them into viable and sustainable companies.
As a partner of FrenchTech, Bpifrance, and France Digitale, ESSEC plays a major role in training the best talent to succeed in the global competition and create tomorrow's worldwide success stories based on innovation in the digital, food, healthcare, and other fields.
Many ESSEC graduates join startups, investors or financial or legal advisors upon graduation, thus contributing each year to enriching a powerful network of alumni in the ecosystem.
Entrepreneurship education at ESSEC is of course an opportunity to acquire the ability to create startups in a world undergoing rapid change. It also allows you to succeed in related professions, which was my case in creating one of the leading financial and legal advisory firms for Tech investors.
Raphaëlle d’Ornano (E09), Founder and Managing Partner at D'Ornano et Associés
Acting in an entrepreneurial way in all organizations
Large corporates, subject to the same transformation forces in their industry, are also very fond of ESSEC graduates with "hybrid" profiles, capable of applying in large groups the recipes that make startups successful. These "intrapreneurs" or "Corporate Startuppers" know how to combine the agility of a entrepreneurial team and the firepower of a large company to deploy innovative products on a large scale.
Baptiste Laurent at Icade
The VC firms
ESSEC maintains close relationships with the most active venture capital investors in France and Europe. Student entrepreneurs benefit from privileged access to VCs seeking to finance the most promising projects. In addition, around twenty students complete 3 to 6-month internships every year with French and European VCs, giving them an insight into the world of innovation financing.
By completing my engineering training at the ESSEC Grande Ecole, I was able to acquire a wide range of skills that have enabled me to build a rich career in the Tech ecosystem. After working in M&A in Europe and Asia-Pacific, then creating a Digital Native Vertical Brand startup in the world of sports, I finally launched Breega, a VC firm founded by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs that invests at PreSeed and Series A throughout Europe with our offices in London and Paris.
Ben Marrel (E06), Managing Partner at Breega
Accelerators and incubators
The ESSEC Ventures incubator encourages co-incubations with other reputable incubators. Numerous student startups have been co-incubated in recent years in the CentraleSupélec incubator, the Founders Program at Station F or the Drahi-X Novation Center at École Polytechnique.
Fully integrated into the support value chain for innovative young companies, the ESSEC Ventures incubator works with a number of accelerators selected for their professionalism and the quality of their support. Student entrepreneurs thus find a relay at the end of their studies to help them continue their development.
Tomcat Factory helps entrepreneurs to create products and services that will massively change and improve the world with a focus on the "Future of Work". ESSEC student entrepreneurs will find with us the same level of excellence and ambition, enabling them to accelerate their growth trajectory. They will be surrounded by entrepreneurs who have brilliantly succeeded and who are dedicated to supporting the new generations of entrepreneurs so that they also have every chance of succeeding.
Patrice Thiry, Founder of ProwebCE & Tomcat Factory
How to innovate with student entrepreneurs?
Through general management education and the practice of entrepreneurship, ESSEC trains future leaders-entrepreneurs capable of understanding the major challenges facing all industrial sectors in the 2020S and of being formidable agents of organizational transformation.
We prepare our students and Executive Education participants for careers that will be less and less linear. They will alternatively exercise their talents in small agile structures or in established companies.
The divide between entrepreneurship and large groups tends to disappear. An ESSEC alumna could thus found a startup, be acquired by a large group where she will hold management positions, then head a spin-off, and then start again an entrepreneurial venture, and so on.
This "hybrid entrepreneur", sometimes a sprint runner, sometimes a marathon runner, will be able to adapt and flourish in the face of very different managerial challenges throughout their career.
ESSEC, through entrepreneurship, seeks to nurture these hybrid profiles, open to the world, capable of scaling up and industrializing nascent innovations as well as making long-established activities agile.
The ultimate goal is to apply the best practices of entrepreneurship to the entire economy.
We propose to partner companies of the Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation to position themselves in a unique way vis-à-vis our students by making them discover very early on the attractiveness and richness of their industry as well as the economic and technological challenges they face.
Some of the entrepreneurial experiences of our students and our partner companies:
• Startup Shaker: 33 hours to create tomorrow's innovations
• Entrepreneurs' Night
• The Digital Week
• The iMagination Week
• CPI: Creation of an Innovative Product
• "ESSEC Founders Day" Annual Event
• Speaker Series
• Study trips to the world's largest startup ecosystems: Silicon Valley, Tel Aviv, Berlin, London,...
Startup Shaker: 33 hours to create tomorrow's innovations