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Top Business Schools in Europe for MBA

Europe is famous for its academic excellence and is home to many prestigious universities with a history of producing world-class business leaders. Institutions such as INSEAD, HEC Paris, ESADE, IE Business School etc. have established themselves as global leaders in business education. Europe has a thriving business ecosystem, with prominent global firms and cutting-edge startups which recruit students from these institutes. No wonder that these schools rank high in worldwide rankings for their MBA programs, which further enhances their reputation and attractiveness to potential students.

The European institutions place a significant emphasis on innovation and entrepreneurship, and the continent has produced numerous successful firms. These concepts are incorporated into the curriculum of European MBA programmes, developing an entrepreneurial attitude and providing valuable training and networks for potential entrepreneurs. Europe’s rich history, diverse cultures, and vibrant cities make it an attractive destination for international students.

1. HEC Paris, France

HEC Paris is the best MBA school in Europe, as per the 2023 QS Ranking. The institution was founded in December 1881, by the Paris Chamber of Commerce & Industry (France’s oldest elite higher education Grandes Ecole). It offers a full-time MBA programme which lasts for 16 months. The programme is intensive and immersive, allowing students to fully concentrate on their studies and gain a thorough understanding of many business disciplines. HEC Paris has a long history of educating leaders who are at the forefront of business. According to the 2017 Times Higher Education Alma Mater Index, the institution has graduated more CEOs of Fortune Global 500 businesses than any other university in Europe.

HEC Paris offers substantial career assistance to its MBA students. Through its vast corporate partnerships, the school has a specialized career services staff that provides personalized coaching, networking events, recruitment fairs, and access to job opportunities. Overall, the MBA program at HEC Paris offers a comprehensive and immersive business education, preparing students for leadership roles in various industries. Some of the most notable alumni of HEC Paris include Jean-Louis Borloo (a famous French politician), Francois-Henri Pinault (a French businessman), and Valerie Pecresse (former president of the Regional Council of Île-de-France). 


  • After the pre-selection there will be two separate interviews taken by the HEC Paris Alumni.

  • Show your career progressions & achievements through a resume.

  • A minimum of 5yrs of work experience (at least 3 yrs of managerial experience).

  • Statement of Purpose to support your interests and career goals, etc.

  • GMAT or GRE score to be submitted (average GMAT score is 690).

  • Requires a few essays.

  • Transcripts of the undergraduate programme.

  • A one page resume to share your professional accomplishments & career trajectory.

  • Requires two letters of recommendations (professional).

  • English proficiency test – IELTS/TOEFL (the college may have more options).

2. IE Business School, Spain

IE Business School was founded in 1973 as Istituto de Empresa, and has been a part of IE University since 2009. It offers an International MBA that emphasizes on entrepreneurial mindset and provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to navigate the business world and launch their own ventures. The school offers 3 types of full-time MBA – 11 months, rapid and quick to learn; 15 months, it provides ample time for career exploration & in-depth learning; 19 months, it is a dual-degree programme where you get a MBA degree with a specialization in a specific field.

This immersive experience provides students with firsthand exposure to other business settings and cultures by participation in foreign consulting assignments. Given its location in Madrid, a hub for technology and innovation, IE Business School has a strong focus on digital transformation and technology management. IE also has international exchange programmes that allow students to study at partner institutions all over the world. Some of the most famous alumni from IE are Santiagi Iniguez (Executive President of IE University), Samy Dana (Founder of Primetalk), and Lauren Henderson (an American Jazz singer). 


  • One online assessment which will have 3 questions (2 videos and 1 essay).

  • A minimum of 3yrs of work experience required.

  • Entrance exams, GMAT or GRE, are compulsory (average 680 GMAT).

  • Personal interview once the documents and written supplements are assessed & accepted.

  • English proficiency test – either TOEFL or IELTS (the school may have more options).

  • A one page professional resume.

  • Transcripts of undergraduation.

  • Two letters of recommendation are required (professional) by answering certain questions provided in the application by the college.

  • Express yourself with the help of a video, a powerpoint presentation, or a written SOP (any 1).

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3. INSEAD Business School, France

INSEAD was formed in 1957 by the then famous capitalist Georges Doriot. And since then it has consistently ranked among the top business schools worldwide. Its main campus is in Fontainebleau, France, followed by other campuses in Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates. INSEAD’s MBA program is renowned for its rigorous curriculum, diverse student body, and global focus. This business school offers a 10 month (accelerated) and a 12 month programme that provides a thorough business education, both are full-time programmes.

MBA at this institution is rigorous and intensive, encompassing a wide range of basic business topics. INSEAD also offers several dual degree programs, allowing students to pursue an MBA along with another degree, such as a Master’s in Finance or a Ph.D. Some of the notable alumni of INSEAD are, Tidjane Thiam (Executive Chairman of Freedom Acquisition Corp., and former CEO of Swiss BankCredit Suisse), Meera Sanyal (former CEO & Chairperson of the Royal Bank of Scotland in India, and politician), and Samir Arora (Founder & CEO of Kyro Digital, and former CEO of Sage Digital). 


  • Transcripts of the undergraduate degree and any other course completed after grade XII.

  • A minimum of 5 to 6yrs of full-time work experience.

  • A professional resume detailing the accomplishments & career growth.

  • English proficiency test score – IELTS or TOEFL.

  • Latest score of GMAT or GRE (accepted students have scores of 670 to 750, with average of 710).

  • An interview will take place after documents are assessed.

  • A statement of purpose discussing your career goals and achievements.

  • INSEAD has three essays to write.

  • Two letters of recommendation are required (professional).

4. ESADE Business School, Spain

ESADE is a private business school founded in 1958 in Barcelona, Spain. You will get an innovative, disruptive, digitally enriched learning experience at ESADE that will equip you to become a creative activist – an entrepreneurial leader capable of breaking the mold, moving the parameters, transforming yourself, and others. ESADE offers three different time durations for its full-time MBA programme – 12 months (core + electives), 15 months (core + electives + internship or exchange), 18 months (core + electives + internship + exchange).

ESADE emphasizes an international perspective and offers opportunities for students to gain exposure to global business environments. The school has a diverse student body and collaborates with partner universities around the world for student exchanges, dual-degree programs, and international internships. The programme provides aspiring entrepreneurs with resources and support, and also organizes business plan competitions and entrepreneurship programmes to promote innovation and the formation of new businesses. Most famous alumni to have studied at ESADE are Irene Rigau (a famous Spanish politician), Gabriel Escarrer Jaume (influential businessman and CEO of Melia Hotels International, Spain), and Javier Faus (leading Spanish private equity investor and founder of Meridia Capital Partners). 


  • Transcripts of the undergraduate degree and any other course completed after grade XII.

  • A minimum of 2yrs of full-time work experience.

  • A professional resume detailing the accomplishments & career growth.

  • English proficiency test score – IELTS or TOEFL.

  • Latest score of GMAT or GRE (average GMAT score is 660).

  • An interview will take place after documents are assessed.

  • A statement of purpose discussing your career goals and achievements.

  • One essay is required.

  • Two letters of recommendation are required (1 academic and 1 professional, or both professional letters).

Students have a variety of business schools to choose from for their MBA. The above mentioned are some of the top MBA institutions in Europe. If you are interested in one of these schools, it is important to devote time to Finance, Mathematics and Marketing etc. during undergraduate studies, and to achieve an excellent GMAT/GRE score. Your dream European MBA isn’t so far off then.

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