Poets&Quants Top Business Schools

ESADE Business School

Contact our general manager with any questions. Profile updated: September 18, 2018.

School Data

Annual Tuition: €64,900

Full-Time Enrollment: 187

International: 94%

Average Age: 28.8

Female: 31%

Male: 69%

Application Deadlines
Round 1: October 2nd, 2018
Round 2: November 27th, 2018
Round 3: January 15th, 2019
Round 4: February 12th, 2019
Round 5: March 5th, 2019
Round 6: April 9th, 2019
Round 7: May 21st, 2019
Round 8: June 4th, 2019 (For EU residents only, subject to spaces remaining on the programme.)

If practice makes perfect, then Barcelona’s ESADE should be pretty good at teaching MBAs, because they have been doing it since 1964. And if diversity is important to you, it is hard to improve on the stunning stat that 96% of students on the last MBA cohort came from 50 countries outside Spain.

The school prides itself as being at the forefront of “modern MBAs,” by which they mean that they aim to prepare creative leaders who can flourish in a disruptive environment. They say their MBA is based on “Four C’s”: Collaborative leadership, Critical thinking, Creativity, and Communication skills. It is also flexible, offering 12-, 15-, and 18-month options, with the longer options involving exchanges and internships.

It is possible to see this MBA through a conventional lens as a core program and around 40 electives ranging from the predictable (Hedge Funds) to the unusual (In Search of Principles for a Life Philosophy). There are the usual study tours, treks, and exchanges — though with 13 partner schools in Asia and 11 in the United States, the range is impressive. ESADE also offers Business Labs for family business, innovation, entrepreneurship, and marketing, and boasts a Career Acceleration Program in investment and private banking, consulting, and technological disruption. 

But the school prefers to talk about the full-time MBA as a transformative experience. They say the first term is about building awareness, promoting introspection and self-knowledge. The second term is about learning to create and innovate, and the third is about transformation, putting into practice what you have learned.

With 186 students from 48 countries in the last cohort, it’s not surprising that this is an eye-opening course. And it goes beyond the usual MBA suspects, too. Unusually, 50% of the last cohort were from the industrial sector, with just 21% from consulting and 12% from financial services. On graduation, 32% of the more recent class went into tech, and around 20% each into finance, consulting, and industry and manufacturing.

If you think all the talk of transformation and creativity means that ESADE is churning out a bunch of dreamers who aren’t focused on the bottom line, the numbers tell a different story. According to the 2018 Financial Times rankings, this full-time MBA was the best for salary increase in Europe.

Luis Vives, Associate Dean of Full-Time MBA

“We pride ourselves on having a diverse cohort on the MBA because we believe the leader of the future must be able to work with others, to foster collaboration and the creation of ecosystems. Collaborative leadership is at the core of what we do. We have a very diverse cohort and we want to build on that diversity. We do not want to homogenize the class, we want them to embrace their differences, backgrounds, and origins by recombining them and creating something new. Our students have interesting stories and we want them to go on creating even more interesting stories.”

Mark Kollias, MBA Candidate, Class of 2019

“I looked at U.S. schools, but the top European ones have very high-quality programs now. Also, when it comes to looking at return on investment, you have to weigh up the cost of living, which is far lower in a city like Barcelona than in a big U.S. city. The cohort is so diverse it is incredible, and I don’t think you would find a culture like this in an American school. There is a healthy competitive drive, but it is also very collaborative. When you are working closely with people from other cultures, you learn a lot about their approach to business, but also your own style and how to flex it. I have also learned a lot about time management. I’m taking the course in 12 months, and on an intense course like this you learn to make every minute count.”



Contact Information

Avda. Torreblanca, 57
08172 Sant Cugat del Vallès
Barcelona, Spain
Admissions Office:
+34 934 952 088
School Social Media:


ESADE Business School is an international academic institution that was established in Barcelona in 1958 as a non-profit organisation. Its key mission is to train individuals to become highly-competent professionals fully aware of their social responsibility. We promote education and research through both our Law and Business Schools with a firm commitment to intellectual rigour, critical analysis and academic excellence.

The vast majority of ESADE’s 60,000 alumni are ambassadors of these values in over one hundred countries and hold top-level posts in companies, public administration and the non-profit sector.

Throughout the years, ESADE has forged deep-rooted ties with the business, economic and social sectors as a platform for education and innovation, as a benchmark research centre and as a stage for reflection and dialogue.

ESADE has a global prestige stems from the excellent standard of its programmes in management, its quality education, its international focus and its holistic approach towards professional and personal skills development. For this reason, ESADE achieves consistently high positions in global rankings how being the 6th Best Business School in the world, by the prestigious Financial Times magazine.

The ESADE Full-Time MBA

Our Full-Time MBA is a top-ranked and highly innovative programme which allows you to customise your MBA experience in 12, 15 or 18 months. The flexibility of our Full Time MBA allows you to adapt the course to suit your individual needs, choosing the format that best fits your professional career objectives, with the option to include an exchange programme and/ or an in-company internship, or return to employment directly to begin new business ventures ahead of time.

Whichever length programme you choose, both the minimum credit requirements and core curriculum are the same. The main difference will be the distribution of courses and whether you undertake a summer internship or exchange programme.

Gain a holistic vision of the business world through our core programme and from your international classmates, whilst discovering the extended customised part of the MBA programme, with a whole host of case competitions and a variety of projects with partner schools around the world, CERN (Centre for Nuclear Research) and the ESADECreapolis ecosystem of companies and start-ups. The focus is to put your newly gained knowledge into practice from day one and take on projects that make a real difference to the world around us.

Focus on the areas that most interest you, be it family business, innovation, entrepreneurship or marketing thanks to our Business Labs and graduate from ESADE how a well-rounded, socially conscientious and adaptable future business leader.

Moreover, we have launched Career Acceleration Programmes (CAPs) in Investment & Private Banking, Consulting and Technological Disruption to provide you the knowledge, market insights, and tools needed for successful careers in these industries. After doing a CAP, you will obtain a Certificate that can be mentioned in your CV.

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