Flying to the Moon with MSc Management: Helping start-ups grow in Paris and Barcelona

MSc Management students impress clients during international start-up consultancy projects.

Going to the moon and actually landing there are dreams that have been achieved and inspired generations.

This May, Barcelona-based start-up Zero2Infinity - a space exploration company whose aim is to enable transportation of humans to space via high altitude balloons - invited a group of Cass Business School's Master’s students to help them achieve their dream.

MSc Management students were tasked with assessing the company’s business lines and taking into account their product features, external market, sales and communication channels and pricing.

This consultancy project was among 18 other start-up clients in Paris and Barcelona with whom 83 MSc Management students worked with during their international electives in May.

In Paris groups of students were placed with start-ups covering a range of industries and sectors where they consulted for:

  • Kwalia - a visual editing tool integrating digital animations
  • VEKIA - a Software as a Service (SaaS) solution specialising in Stock Management optimisation
  • Goshaba – a turnkey solution for companies to manage their referral recruitment
  • Clevy –  an application creating information chatbots for employees
  • Estimeo - a rating platform for startups
  • Gamifly -  esports free webapp allowing users to predict the score of live games
  • Anamnese – an application allowing patients to prepare their medical consultation before meeting a doctor
  • StoragePal – an application for ordering storage and transport of just about everything in your home or office.

In Barcelona, Cass students were hosted by a similarly vast range of businesses including:

  • Frizbit and Edit – SaaS provider
  • Photoslurp – SaaS provider
  • Tradler – SaaS provider
  • Subbo – SaaS provider
  • ITNIG – a seed fund
  • Stagein Home – an AR application for interior design
  • Trendy BCN – a marketing agency
  • Vodity – a start-up dedicated to audio-visual content distribution.

The consultation period consisted of a one week trip to Paris and one week to Barcelona, followed by three weeks of report writing.

Students spent their time with the businesses collecting data and analysing the situation and later trying to find solutions.

The rise of digital technology and data analytics in many industries including retail, media, HR and health enabled our tech savvy students to advise start-ups  on data collection and analysis as well as how to advertise products to consumers through social media.

The consultancy reports prepared by each team are testaments to the students’ learning at Cass and their ability to collect and analyse data.

Client feedback

The value of these reports is best summarised in feedback from clients:

Tradler (Barcelona): “The question is not ‘Is this report useful’ as the answer is clearly yes, the question is what will be the actions that we can take out of this report.”

Trendy BCN (Barcelona): “We think that the entire report is magnificent, but what we found the strongest subjects were the economic analysis regarding the country in which our products would be sold the best way, and the forecast they did for us.”

Edit (Barcelona): “They did really good market research, and discovered a new opportunity for EDIT to expand our market.”

Goshaba (Paris): “The team found specific information about the competition that we didn’t have. Warning about upcoming entrants is sound.”

Vekia (Paris): “The most interesting feedback is about addressing medium-size companies rather than the biggest ones. And interestingly, it’s something that is currently being discussed. This clearly confirms that we should review our targeted market asap. “

Kwalia (Paris): “The students did a nice job trying to understand the specific of the markets Kwalia is targeting, and also the specific features of the product itself – especially considering they could not actually see it in use!”

Dr Joanna Zaleska, Course Director of MSC Management said each group of Cass MSc Management students brought outside perspective to their hosts, allowing them to clearly identify and problem-solve issues.

“From client feedback we know that some of these reports have already influenced the client’s thinking and decisions and galvanised them into action,” Dr Zaleska said.

Entrepreneurship is unquestionably on the rise in terms of master’s students career choice.

“In the past students searched for jobs in established multinational companies as they offered stability and guaranteed income.

“Now, with the success stories of many start-ups and a growing need for independence and self-fulfilment, international modules such as our Start-Up elective are growing in popularity as they meet the needs and expectations of a new generation of students.”

International elective master students have travelled to business incubators in Buenos Aires and Helsinki in recent years.

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