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Executive MBA

AviaSim CEO Thomas Gasser: Inspired by HEC Paris Executive MBA's Fellow Entrepreneurs

“I decided to do an Executive MBA to help my company grow internationally." 

HEC Paris EMBA alum Thomas Gasser

 When he applied to HEC Paris, seasoned entrepreneur Thomas Gasser, EMBA ’24, had an inkling that the diversity of participants in the HEC Paris Executive MBA program would be one of the program’s most valuable aspects.

Now, a year into his EMBA experience, he’s convinced it’s been one of its most transformative.


“I decided to do an Executive MBA to help my company grow internationally. I’m aware of all challenges I will meet during my global expansion and the adaptation which is needed to structure a business internationally.” 

The sheer diversity inherent within the program means students interact with people from a host of different personal and professional backgrounds, many of whom are eager to explore new opportunities in their home countries and beyond.

As Thomas can attest, the journey of entrepreneurship is never a solitary one. It's a path carved with determination, learning, and, often, serendipitous encounters.

The program’s unique blend of backgrounds and aspirations offers a wealth of possibilities for the entrepreneurially focused and the opportunistic among them. For Thomas, this occurred when he crossed paths with Malose Kekana, a fellow EMBA participant with a passion for innovation. Together, they embarked on discussions that eventually led to the development of a South African franchise for Thomas's business, initially established in Europe and North America.

“The EMBA program enables me learn more about the theory behind all actions I can take as a manager and better prepare for the future.” 


The collaboration between Thomas and Malose exemplifies the Executive MBA program's capacity to foster connections amongst entrepreneurs,and encourage participants to explore new possibilities beyond their current ventures.

Pairing entrepreneurial vision with opportunity: the HEC Paris Executive MBA

Thomas Gasser's entrepreneurial journey is a testament to his ambition and foresight. As the leader of his own company, he recognized the need to expand globally and tackle the challenges that come with international growth.

“I decided to do an Executive MBA to help my company grow internationally. I’m aware of all challenges I will meet during my global expansion and the adaptation which is needed to structure a business internationally.”

To achieve this, he made a strategic decision: pursuing an Executive MBA that would not only enhance his business acumen and sharpen his entrepreneurial edge, but also connect him with a diverse network of professionals from around the world.

“The opportunity of an EMBA at HEC Paris is unique. It gives you the chance to meet people from all over the world with different backgrounds.”

Why the HEC Paris EMBA?

When asked about his choice of the HEC Paris Executive MBA program, Thomas emphasizes the uniqueness of the opportunity it presents.

"It makes the opportunity to exchange and see various profiles in unique way," he explains.

For international entrepreneurs like Thomas, the importance and the appeal of the EMBA's global perspective cannot be overstated.

"The intensity of the program allowed me to exchange ideas and interact with various profiles in a unique way," he says.

Additionally, the academic structure of the HEC Paris Executive MBA holds significant appeal for entrepreneurs. It provides a holistic view of different topics that are essential for understanding global markets and how business can be conducted across borders. This multifaceted approach equips entrepreneurs with the skills and insights needed to navigate the complexities of international business successfully.

Immediately applying knowledge and skills at work

Thomas understands that in the world of entrepreneurship, quick and informed decision-making is critical. With an emphasis on real-world applicability, the HEC Paris Executive MBA program has enabled him to immediately apply the knowledge, connections, and skills he has gained in his professional life.

“Managing an SME means I can make quick moves in terms of strategic planning,” he explains. “The EMBA program enables me learn more about the theory behind all actions I can take as a manager and better prepare for the future.”

This burgeoning familiarity with the brass tacks of business— a deeper understanding of the theoretical underpinnings behind managerial actions— is in no small part, he says, due to the accessibility of HEC Paris’ world class instructors. He speaks highly of the professors at HEC Paris, noting the added value of the practical nature of their teachings.

“The quality of professors and their professional background helps to avoid too much theory during courses and underline what is the reality of the field. Their availability to exchange after class is a great time to discuss the key topics each participant might want to address.”

Discovering new entrepreneurial avenues at HEC Paris

One of the most remarkable aspects of the HEC Paris EMBA program is the diversity of its participants. As Thomas highlights, this diversity allows students to interact with people from various walks of life, some of whom are eager to explore new opportunities in their home countries.

"The academic structure of this EMBA is interesting for an entrepreneur. It gives you a unique view on different topics to better understand any market and the way business can be done."

The collaboration between Thomas and Malose exemplifies the program's capacity to foster entrepreneurial connections and encourage participants to explore new possibilities beyond their current ventures.

As Thomas' journey in entrepreneurship continues with the HEC Paris Executive MBA, he makes a point to highlight the transformative power of education and networking in the entrepreneurial world. Through this program, the EMBA-entrepreneur has not only expanded his global perspective but has also formed valuable connections that are shaping the future of his entrepreneurial endeavors.

For entrepreneurs with a vision for international success, the HEC Paris EMBA proves to be a vital stepping stone towards achieving their goals.


More CEOs of Fortune Global 500 companies have graduated from HEC Paris than any other university in Europe. Nearly 4,000 graduates are currently CEOs, CFOs, or have founded their own companies. The Executive MBA at HEC Paris perennially ranks among the best in the world; click here to learn more.

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If you’re ready to take the next step in your EMBA journey, introduce yourself  to our recruitment team.