In March, a team of MBA students traveled to Madrid, Spain, as part of their Global Business Experience (GBE) course to work for GRI Renewable Industries, a renewable energy company, on a project that examined a market-entry strategy into the United States.
The Consulting Experience
The four students chose to consult for a renewable energy company for their paramount interest in the industry.
“I realized that my group’s work could be very impactful in a new industry that is still in its infancy in the United States,” said Ilya Rozhkov (MBA’18). “Most industries are evolving and revolutionizing every day. Being part of this journey is an exciting experience.”
“I am quite passionate about renewable energy,” said Alexander Cole (MBA’18). “I wanted to understand the market forces and how renewable energy firms react to a host of regulatory hurdles as well as technological advances.”
The team consulted for their client remotely from Washington, D.C., before traveling to Europe to present their final recommendations.
“Being able to communicate an idea is so crucial to relationships, so having a common business language is also critical,” said Cole.
During the project, students valued the experience of working with a Spanish company with a global presence in a dynamic industry.
“Our client has a global footprint with 14 factories in eight countries and an ambitious plan to enter the U.S. market,” said Amirali Sewani (MBA’18). “It was good to see their due diligence process prior to entering a new market, and their analysis of each new location for strategic fit or market access.”
For Navin Thawani (MBA’18), one of the biggest takeaways was that “the key to success for a multinational organization is to not only develop an understanding of the unique cultures or regulations where it is looking to expand, but being able to trust the people on the ground making the decisions.”
The consulting experience ended with a final presentation to the company’s top management, approximately 60 executives.
“The need to do cross-border business requires a similar adaptation of global values, language, and certain principles, and requires the company to be open-minded about other cultures and countries,” said Thawani.
“GBE helped me to be more comfortable speaking the universal business language and more adept at understanding other cultures and how they employ business fundamentals,” said Cole.
The students were grateful for the eye-opening experience provided by the GBE course and the globally focused curriculum of the MBA program, which deepened their knowledge of global business.
“Through classes, GBE, and of course the many classmates that I have met over the years who have a strong international business background, I am well-positioned to excel in the future as an advisor to global companies and as a global leader,” said Rozhkov.
“Post-graduation, as an associate investment officer at the International Finance Corporation, I will be working with private sector organizations in emerging markets to address their capital and business needs and help develop their local financial markets,” said Sewani. “The Georgetown McDonough MBA curriculum was essential in giving us a global perspective on business and teaching us how different aspects of business come together.”