2020 Best & Brightest MBAs: Angeliki Malizou, ESADE

Angeliki Malizou

ESADE Business School                 

“Greek by origin, European at heart, keen believer in profitable but socially and environmentally sustainable business models.”

Hometown: Hard to tell which one is my hometown, but I am definitely from Greece.

Fun fact about yourself: I once visited an art exhibition in Brussels and managed to acquire my desired piece of art in exchange for homemade moussaka, a Greek delicacy.

Undergraduate School and Degree: Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece. BA in Law.

Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? BEUC – The European Consumer Organisation. Energy policy officer

Where did you intern during the summer of 2019? Amazon, Madrid

Where will you be working after graduation? Sales development at the Israeli tech start-up 3D CASTOR

Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School: One of the most satisfying activities during my MBA was contributing to ESADE’s distinct symbiotic environment. I took on an active role as vice president of both the Politics and Public Affairs Club and the Energy and Environment Club. As VP of the Politics Club, I leveraged my prior network in EU public affairs and invited a member of the European Commission’s legal service with extensive experience in litigation before the EU courts. This guest discussed the EU’s competition policy through cases such as Ireland’s preferential treatment of Apple or the multi-billion-euro Google fine. I was also pleased to be one of the faces of ESADE’s 60th-anniversary campaign and debate the future of education and the role of artificial intelligence in a series of interviews and videos. I was encouraged to pursue my interests in cleantech through the award of the ESADE sustainable energy scholarship, and I was honored to be nominated by the student body for the Leadership and Team Spirit awards.

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? One of the most enriching experiences of my ESADE MBA was being one of the faces of the school’s “Cross the line” campaign, aimed at encouraging more women to pursue an MBA and become involved in business. Through a series of videos and interviews, I was able to share the concerns I faced in the decision process leading to my MBA and propose ways to overcome them. The outcome of the campaign has been highly rewarding. Women account for 39% of ESADE’s new incoming class, the highest percentage in the program’s history.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? I played an instrumental role in renewing the EU’s commitment to energy-efficient product policy, which was scaled down due to anti-EU media before Brexit. To reverse this, I supervised a study on the economic benefits of this policy for EU households. The compelling conclusions attracted the attention of policymakers. The first Vice-President of the European Commission and the Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness asked to hold a roundtable at my employers’ office. Alongside industry and the media, they renewed the EU’s commitment to this policy and, shortly after, proposed new measures.

Who was your favorite MBA professor? Ever since I was a little kid, I was encouraged to read the newspaper and stay on top of what is going on in the world. Twenty years later, I was lectured on global governance by one of the foremost figures in the newspapers of my childhood, Javier Solana, the former Secretary-General of NATO amongst many other leading roles. This was undoubtedly one of the most enriching experiences of my MBA, as Solana exemplified with his teachings how business does not take place in a vacuum but is instead closely intertwined with global politics. He also gave all of us aspiring businesspeople one of the most valuable pieces of advice we would receive: “Build your network when you least need it.”

Why did you choose this business school? Choosing this program was not an easy decision but a lesson in itself. I was torn between pursuing an MBA at ESADE or another prestigious MBA in France. For a brief period, I fell in the pitfall of trying to choose based on generic metrics, lists, and rankings. Then I decided to choose based on what represented me most, and I could not be happier with the outcome. I did not pursue an MBA with a strictly pre-defined post-MBA goal, but rather with the goal of learning from others and being inspired. ESADE offers that in spades, thanks to its diversity and agility in providing intellectual stimuli for all kinds of profiles.

What is your best advice to an applicant hoping to get into your school’s MBA program? During your MBA, look beyond the academics and the job hunt. The most enriching part will be the conversations you will have with your peers. Make sure to have one with each of the 180 of them.

Looking back over your MBA experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently and why? I would have attended every single event of the Japan Corner, a social/cultural club set up by our Japanese classmates. I only attended the last one and it was hands down one of the best opportunities to discover Japan’s fascinating culture and cuisine.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? It is an impossible task to single out just one, but since I have to, it would be Omar ElBadawy. His CV speaks to his intellectual rigor, but I want to highlight his intangible value as Omar. He is one of those people who raise the bar for empathy and the soft skills of any group. He was a member of my section, and I dare say his genuine soft skills created a distinctive sense of unity for an entire group of 60 very diverse people.

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? Monique Goyens, who leads one of the most influential lobbies in the EU, tasked with protecting consumer interests across Europe. And while she won’t hesitate to pick a fight with a tech giant putting consumer welfare at risk, she is a keen believer in the power of business, innovation, and competition to advance societal goals. She unknowingly inspired me to pursue an MBA and explore how one can leverage entrepreneurship and business management to promote causes I am passionate about, such as cleantech and the transition to sustainable energy.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list? Build a company. And keep it.

In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? As the go-to person if you are in urgent need of a muffin in the morning or a piece of chocolate after lunch. Also, as someone who was good at listening and was not afraid to speak up.


Taking notes in my travel journal.


Anything that simulates the feeling of flying, such as skydiving or paragliding.

What made Angeliki such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2020?

“If we were to choose a determined student who has shown passion in achieving her goals and contributed to ESADE’s unique symbiotic environment, that student would be Angeliki.

Upon joining the MBA, she dived straight into an active role as the vice president of both the Politics and Public Affairs and Energy and Environment clubs.

Drawing on her 7+ years of experience in the field of EU public affairs related to cleantech, energy efficiency, energy markets, and sustainable product design, Angeliki invited key speakers, helping to grow the Politics and Public Affairs Club from a handful of people to more than 60 members over the past year. Her determination to contribute to ESADE’s future beyond the core activities was also on display in her role as one of the faces of ESADE’s “Cross The Line” campaign, as well as in the 60th-anniversary campaign to debate the future of education and the role that artificial intelligence will play in it.

Angeliki received internship offers from both Amazon and HP, as well as an offer to work on business development and marketing at a cleantech startup leveraging block-chain technology to manage renewable energy assets, allowing her to successfully make the “triple jump.” Her aforementioned career progression is, in part, due to her adaptability and strong communication and soft skills, areas in which Angeliki clearly excels and shines on her own merit.”

Prof. Jan Hohberger
Associate Dean of the ESADE MBA and Associate Professor Strategy and General Management
ESADE Business School


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