Multinationals open their doors for RSM finance students
Finance and investment students have continued to expand their industry knowledge and networks with visits to three multinationals. Days after returning from a successful study trip to Frankfurt, students from the MSc Finance and Investments Advanced Programme (FI-A) at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) made company visits to Unilever's Benelux headquarters in Rotterdam on 26 January, Rabobank's headquarters in Utrecht on 27 January, and Achmea’s insurance brand Interpolis in Tilburg on 8 February 2017.
During the visits, the finance students attended presentations by management on their organisation's vision, outlook for the future and career opportunities. Students also took part in an array of activities that gave them the opportunity to showcase their negotiation, problem-solving and presention skills, and had time for informal networking with employees.
Ariën Hazeleger, an FI-A student, said: “These trips are inspiring and an excellent chance to get a feel for an organisation: to hear their vision and get a sense of the company's culture. They are also an opportunity for us to show them what skills we have and to develop potentially important contacts.”
International opportunities at Unilever
At Unilever, a group of 38 students were given an overview of the company's worldwide operations and brands, as well as its internship and traineeship opportunities. Erik van Vliet, finance director of customer development, shared his personal career journey, including his experience working for Unilever.
Students faced the challenge of preparing their own lunch using Unilever products after taking part in a Kahoot quiz to determine which teams got first pick of different products. Finance trainees from Unilever made a final judgement of their meals.
A case challenge followed, during which students pitched ideas to executives on how to strategically market a premium and a low-budget dessert ice-cream in ways that would simultaneously increase their sustainability – a demonstrate the knowledge they have gained on the programme.
Networking, negotiations, and conference calls at Rabobank
Susan Eeftink, head of HR Rabobank, opened the visit to Rabobank by presenting to the group of 20 RSM students the company's vision on the future of the workplace, including the impact of globalisation, technology, and the skills that will be needed for future success in the job market.
A tour of Rabobank's extensive art collection followed, and a presentation by the company's economics research department on the Chinese housing market bubble, as well as the possibility of a ‘Nexit’ (Dutch exit from the EU). Lunch presented an informal opportunity for students to network with employees from Rabobank.
Students then took part in an M&A case challenge for a carve-out of four brands from a large alcoholic beverage conglomerate. After being split up into buy and sell advisory sides, students drafted a deal proposal and a valuation of the specific carve-out, which they pitched in a 'conference call' with Rabobank M&A analysts, who acted as the client. Lengthy and intense negotiations took place between the buy and sell sides before a successful deal was reached, making for a realistic simulation of a real-world negotiation and an excellent learning experience. The event concluded with networking drinks.
Tackling complex insurance issues at Achmea
Managers at Achmea Insurance brand Interpolis welcomed twenty RSM students to the company with a presentation on the organisation and its different insurance sectors, as well as the various career opportunities that exist within Achmea.
To help students get to grips with the complex health insurance sector that exists in the Netherlands, the senior manager of Financial Control gave a presentation on the privatisation of the Dutch healthcare system and how risk equalization ensures all Dutch citizens receive high quality healthcare.
Students were then able to demonstrate their own skills by working in teams to crack a challenging case: how to optimally focus on a segment in the car insurance sector to maximize the company’s profitability, while taking ethical and reputation issues into consideration. After pitching their solutions to executives, students spent time networking with employees.
MSc Finance and Investments Advanced
The MSc Finance & Investments Advanced is a 16-month selective and advanced programme that attracts students of exceptional ability. The programme features close interaction with businesses and organisations in the industry as well as highly interactive, small classes. The curriculum offers students advanced courses, enhanced career preparation, an internship, high-profile external lecturers, extensive contact with corporate partner companies and study trips.
Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top 10 research-based business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam – a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who carry their innovative mindset into a sustainable future thanks to a first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes. Study information and activities for future students, executives and alumni are also organised from the RSM office in Chengdu, China. www.rsm.nl
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