Executive Master in Finance

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Executive Master in Finance

The toolbox and know-how on your path to expertise in managerial finance and risk management 

The Executive Master in Finance is a programme specialized in finance, combining tools, techniques and professional judgment on cutting-edge topics. Our mission is to make sure you will never examine a financial decision without a sustained argument and a critical eye, based on a strong financial literacy.

Designed for practitioners with a harmonious time schedule, it provides a hybrid pedagogy associating practical cases and experience. This approach fosters interactions between the various participants’ backgrounds, while satisfying different motivations: sharpen your skills in finance or add a new dimension to a current background more and more in touch with financial topics.

Finance is devoted to be the hub of multidisciplinary teams. The EMF promotes this role by pooling a variety of backgrounds and experiences linked to finance. Our audience thus comprises high potential professionals in the financial sector, financial managers of industrial companies, finance consultants, corporate lawyers, industrial engineers promoted to managerial functions, as well as attorneys specialised in the capital markets.

Covering the main topics of today’s finance, the programme ensures readiness for the CFA and GARP examinations, whilst providing a degree accredited by the ACIIA as corresponding to a CIIA Foundation level. Hugues Pirotte, EMF Director:

The Executive Master in Finance of Solvay means interactive learning, knowledge and experience sharing, case studies and applications, brainstorming, debates and fun! It is also a guarantee that you will be trained by senior faculty members and practitioners, who find here an excellent opportunity to communicate their passion. Our mission is to make sure you will never examine a financial decision without a sustained argument and a critical eye, based on strong financial literacy.

Objectives & Outcomes

The Executive Master in Finance offers a real step-up in finance thanks to a rich variety of topics covered.

Learning Outcomes/Benefits:

The Executive Master of Finance (EMF) aims at combining

  • a strong intuitive understanding of the financial philosophy and toolbox that this discipline has been developing over the last 50 years,

  • the discovery of financial competences that will be highly complementary to your daily managerial needs,

  • a capacity to digest these notions and to integrate them in a better financial decision-making process and management in general, and

  • an enriching experience shared with a diversified audience of high potentials, maximising your career evolution.  

The Executive Master of Finance will undoubtedly sharpen your career profile and help you maximise your future opportunities. You will also benefit from our strong alumni network and huge palette of financial events, encounters, practical real-life cases and networking opportunities.

Quality guarantee:

  •  Study at the Belgian school of excellence for finance in the heart of Europe

  •  Learn from a first-class faculty

  •  Exchange best practices with highly motivated participants

  •  Final exams and presentation of a business case support in front of an academic jury

  •  Access to a wide network of finance professionals

Participants' Profile

The sucess of each EMF promotion largely lingers on the heterogeneity and experience of the participants. Therefore, our assessment of candidates' applications makes a particular emphasis on the participants' desire to step-up their career, their previous experience (not necessarily directly related to finance) and their motivation to enrol.

Our audience brings together high-profile participants from a wide range of business backgrounds: consulting, corporate law, engineering, accounting, trading, compliance, regulation, corporate treasury, budgeting, banking, family office management, SME management, communication, as well as EU officials, scientists involved or deemed to be involved in the management, etc.

The programme is particularly suitable for:

  • Finance managers of industrial and servicing companies

  • Managing directors of SMEs

  • Executives in the financial sector

  • Consultants and auditors

  • Lawyers specialized in financial restructuring (M&As, IPOs)

We have had the pleasure of welcoming participants from a variety of corporations and institutions, to name but a few:

  • Banks: ING, Dexia, Fortis, Axa, Crédit Agricole Indosuez, BNP Parisbas;

  • Industry : Engie, Mobistar, Belgacom, B-Post, DHL, Burgo, CFE, Basell, Honeywell, Tractebel;

  • Financial Services : Fortis Real Estate, CBFA, Euroclear, SWIFT;

  • Consultancy : Bain, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Ormit;

  • Public administration: European Commission, European Parliament.



Programme Structure

From October to June, the EMF delivers a content seperated in (a) a prepatory module in Quantitative Analysis, (b) six (6) building blocks in the various disciplines of finance and (c) an additional 4-day course in Financial Modelling in Excel. Please click here to download the course calendar.

The knowledge brought in class by the professors is completed by specific readings, articles, presentations, simulation games and Excel application files.

In addition, we understand that our students have varying and very specific career requirements and time constraints. Therefore, a series of modules can also be undertaken as stand-alone studies: Corporate Finance, Financial Reporting and Analysis, Investments, Derivatives and Risk Management.

For detailed information about our modular education offer, please visit http://coms.solvay.edu/fin or contact the EMF Programme Manager.

Course Contents

Module 1 - Quantitative Tools for Finance

The objective of this preliminary module is to take you on a round trip through the essence of some fundamental concepts of statistics and probability, illustrated by exercises:

  • Descriptive statistics (univariate and multivariate)
  • Probability distributions (Gaussian, Poisson, exponential, etc.), models and Monte Carlo simulations
  • Statistical decision rules (estimation and inference about the mean)

The second part of this module covers valuation modelling in Excel (building pro forma models, cost of capital calculations), with an additional focus on portfolio and options computations.

All concepts are illustrated by short exercises.

Module 2 - Corporate Finance & Restructuring

This module is the starting point and cornerstone of the EMF programme. It explores the key foundations of finance, the valuation principles and scheme in general, the understanding of the requirement of return given a level of risk, the valuation of the various asset classes, projects and firms. It also brings to the forefront the latest developments in Corporate Finance and the funding of firms in general.


Module 3 - Financial Reporting and Analysis

The financial motivation, philosophy and structure being clearer after the first module, it is important to realise that there will be no accurate valuation without good data quality and understanding. Therefore, the financial reporting module aims at understanding and analysing published financial statements. Having successfully completed it, participants will be able to use financial statements as a basis for financial decision making, and to understand their limitations and potential pitfalls.

Module 4 - International Investments

Its aim is to provide a sound knowledge of the fundamentals of modern portfolio theory, asset allocation theory and portfolio construction techniques. At the end of the module, participants are expected to understand the main strategies, active and passive portfolio management and portfolio measurement, and to discuss real-world examples. Special cutting-edge products and applications will also be covered, together with an analysis of their implication in modern financial management (hedge funds, funds of funds, structured products).

Module 5 - Derivatives

This module presents a deeper understanding of financial derivatives, with particular emphasis on their valuation via the arbitrage method and their uses within financial markets and companies. It benefits from a dynamic academic-practitioner duo as faculty, with a wealth of know-how and experience to share.

Module 6 - Risk Management

Relying on the knowledge acquired in previous modules, this “umbrella” module addresses the main topics related to Financial Risk Management (market, credit, model and liquidity risks), Operational Risk Management and Economic Capital. Financial market risks identification, valuation and management are covered in detail.

Module 7 - Asset & Liability Management

The aim of this module is to provide focused, theoretical and practical training in all the key methodologies employed in this important discipline. Covering all major approaches to the measurement and management of interest rate risk and hedging techniques, modules will be supported by team-based, advanced computer simulation exercises. The course is split into two equal parts with the first (second) part covering the theory (practice).



The faculty include both academic professors with a professional expertise and practitioners:

M. Brière

Marie Brière is head of the Investor Research Center at Amundi. She is also affiliate professor at Paris Dauphine University, and associate researcher at the Centre Emile Bernheim at Solvay Brussels School of Economics & Management. She is the managing editor of the academic journal Bankers, Markets & Investors.
Dr. Brière began her career as a quantitative researcher at the proprietary trading desk of BNP Paribas. She also served as a fixed-income strategist at Crédit Lyonnais Asset Management and as head of fixed income, foregn exchange, and volatility strategy at Crédit Agricole Asset Management. Her scientific articles have been published in international academic journals including the Financial Analyst Journal, Journal of Banking and Finance, Journal of International Money and Finance, etc. She received the Markowitz award for her article with Zvi Bodie on "Sovereign Wealth and Risk Management", published in the Journal of Investment Management. She holds a PhD in economics from the University Paris X and is a graduate of ENSAE.

A. Chapelle

Ariane Chapelle has developed her career between the academic world (at the SBS-EM and at the London Business School) and in training and consulting for the financial industry. She also held responsibilities in Internal Audit, Credit Risk and Operational Risk Management at ING and Lloyds Banking Group. She is a professional member of the Institute of Operational Risk and the Institute of Risk Management.

A. Farber

Previously Dean of the Faculty of Social Science, Politics and Economics – SBS, André Farber is Professor of Finance at the SBS-EM. He has been Visiting Professor at the University of Chicago, Cornell University and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He holds a PhD in Management Science from ULB. He has been President of the European Finance Association. André Farber holds several board and advisory board positions. Prof. Farber has published extensively in the domains of market efficiency, cost of capital, and asset pricing.

J. Haynes

John Haynes is specialised in providing training for Interest Rate Risk and ALM Issues. He has over 20 years practical experience in this field and has worked as an ALM consultant with many banks. John was formally Vice President, Chase Manhattan Bank responsible for ALM products, training and support throughout Europe, Africa and the Middle East.  Previously, he was Manager, Balance Sheet Management at National Westminster Bank responsible for strategic risk assessment and policy for NWB Group operations, covering interest rate risk, liquidity and structural balance sheet issues. A a specialist in the field of A/LM he has worked with a wide range of institutions such as ABN/Amro Bank Netherlands, ABSA Bank, South Africa, Barclays Bank, London and Africa, Lloyds/TSB, London, Unicredit, Italy... and many others worldwide. His expertise ranges from Structure and Role of Alco, to ALCO Reporting and Interpretation, Restructure of Treasury Operations, Treasury and Alco Integration, Funds Transfer Pricing and Management and Analyst Training. He is also specialized in establishing computer models for Retail Portfolios, Wholesale Portfolios, Balance Sheets and Derivative Books.

P. Hillion

Pierre Hillion is the de Picciotto Chair Professor of Alternative Investments at Insead, held the Shell Professorship in Finance from 1999 to 2004 and was a Visiting Professor at the University of California in Los Angeles and the California Institute of Technology.  He received his MBA from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales (HEC) in France, holds a DEA from the University Paris-Dauphine and is a PhD graduate of the University of California in Los Angeles.
Pierre Hillion teaches in different executive programmes given at INSEAD and at the Amsterdam Institute of Finance. He is the Programme Director of the Macquarie-Insead Master of Finance.
Pierre Hillion was the recipient of several awards from the Q. Group, NATO, ECMI and the BSI Gamma Foundation. He has published extensively in the fields of asset and option pricing models and market microstructure.
In addition, Pierre Hillion works as an Academic Advisor to Union Bancaire Privée and to Lombard Odier Darier Hentsch in Geneva.  He is currently based at INSEAD Singapore, and is also a CEPR Research Fellow.

G. Hübner

Georges Hübner (Ph.D., INSEAD) holds the Deloitte Chair of Portfolio Management and Performance and is Board Member at HEC-University of Liège. He is also Associate Professor of Finance at Maastricht University, Visiting Professor at the SBS-EM, and Affiliate Professor at EDHEC. He is the founder and scientific director of Gambit Financial Solutions, a financial software spin-off of HEC-Liège.

M. Massart

After graduating from the SBS-EM in 1974, Michel Massart joined PricewaterhouseCoopers and  became a partner in 1984, active in audit up to 1997. He then became managing partner of the corporate finance department of PwC, specializing in M&A, valuations and company reorganizations. From 1998 to 2010, he was professor of advanced accounting at SBS-EM. He is currently director and member of the audit committee of Interxion N.V., a company operating in European Colocation and Data Centers listed on the NYSE.

H. Pirotte

Hugues Pirotte is the BNP Paribas Fortis Professor of Finance at the SBS-EM and holds a PhD in finance from the Ecole des HEC, University of Lausanne. He is the CEO and co-founder of FinMetrics, a Swiss consultancy and software development firm in risk management. He publishes in the domains of market, credit and operational risk management, liquidity management, financial valuation and financial governance, he also has a reference book in Advanced Credit Risk Analysis. He is a member of the BEL20 Committee and the Association of Corporate Treasurers of Western Switzerland (ACTSR), honorary member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers of Luxembourg (ATEL),  and co-founder of the Finance Club of Brussels. He also manages the corporate finance module of the Swiss Accountancy Academy.

K. Oosterlinck

Professor Kim Oosterlinck holds a Ph.D. in Economics and Management from the Université libre de Bruxelles. After a post-doctoral stay at Rutgers University (the State University of New Jersey), he became professor at the Université libre de Bruxelles. From September 2006 to February 2011 he was in charge of a Master in management of cultural institutions. In this framework he taught various courses dedicated to the economics of arts and culture and management of cultural institutions.

In January 2011 he took over a chair in Finance (Université libre de Bruxelles). His main research interests are sovereign bond valuation, financial history and art market investments. Kim Oosterlinck has published in several leading academic journals such as the American Economic Review (Papers and Proceedings), the Journal of Economic History, the Journal of Monetary Economics or the Review of Finance. He just published a book on the Repudiation of Russian Sovereign Bonds at Yale University Press.

Y. Swan

Yvik Swan graduated from the Département de Mathématiques of the ULB in 2002. In 2004 he obtained a master’s degree in Statistics and Operational Research from the I.S.R.O., and in 2007 he received his PHD in Statistics at the ULB. He is now research associate at the mathematics' research unit of the Université du Luxembourg, and maître de conférence at the medical school of the Université Libre de Bruxelles.

N. Tuchschmid

Nils Tuchschmid is currently professor and head of the Finance Institute at the Haute Ecole de Gestion Fribourg, (University of Applied Sciences). Before joining HEG-FR, Nils was a Partner and Head of Tactical Trading Strategies at Tages Group. Previously, he has been the Co-Head of the Alternative Funds Advisory team at UBS and Head of Multi-Manager Portfolios at Credit-Suisse. He also worked as Strategist and Head of quantitative research and alternative investments at Banque Cantonale Vaudoise

Nils was Professor of Banking and Finance at HEG Geneva and Professor of Finance at HEC Lausanne University. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Geneva and has published numerous articles and research papers in particular on asset management and asset allocation, on alternative investments and performance measurement.

C. Vaessen

Celine Vaessen has a Master in Management Sciences and an Executive Master in Finance from the SBS. As a financial advisor for the Belgian State, she is in charge of managing the Belgian State holdings in Financial Institutions on behalf of the Minister of Finance. She teaches regularly Finance to MBA and executive students of the SBS.


Eligible applicants need to have a professional experience of minimum 3 years, demonstrate English proficiency, and in particular to fulfil at least two of the following requirements:

  • Hold a University degree…

  • …with a major in Business Administration, Economics, Engineering, Sciences or Law

  • Have professional experience in a field related to finance or one that could typically benefit from stronger knowledge of finance.

The Admission Committee will make a first judgment based on the file submitted by the applicant online. Subsequently, candidates will be invited for an interview with the Programme Manager and, in cut-off cases, the Academic Director. This is aimed at exploring in-depth the applicants' background and professional experience, with the aim of ensuring the best fit between an applicant and the programme. Furthermore, the decision of the Admission Committee is also based on applicants’ personal motivation, achievements and development objectives.


Registrations take place from April to end September on a rolling basis. 

As we have set a numerus clausus of 30 participants per year, if you plan to apply in the late stages of the application period (September), please do not hesitate to put an option on your name (free of charge) to make sure that a seat is available for you.

For an in-depth, tailored discussion of programme, our selection process and your particular profile and career needs, please contact the Programme Manager.

Roxana Dude - Programme Manager
Av. F.D. Roosevelt 42 CP114/01
1050 Brussels

Phone: +32 (0)2 650 66 34
Email: emf[at]solvay.edu

Discover the Executive Master in Finance

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Discover the Executive Master in Finance with Hugues Pirotte (Academic Director), Celiné Vaessen (Professor of Finance), Rafael Pérez Cortines (EMF Alumni 2012-2013), Vincent Jodard (EMF Alumni 2014-2015)


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Alumni talks: "A very positive experience!"

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Gaelle Akahori - Alumni Executive Master in Finance

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Alumni talks: "Solvay was an evidence!"

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François-Xavier Mollière - Alumni Executive Master in Finance

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Marc Coppens, Senior Financial Controller & Finance Project Manager at Moteo (Alcopa group), 2008 EMF Alumnus

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"The EMF provides you with the necessary knowledge and tools to be confident and proficient in Finance. You also get to meet very interesting people from different horizons with a common interest, including top level professors. Furthermore, the EMF clearly helped me in my career transition."

Raffaella Calvi, Senior Officer, European Investments Bank, 2007 EMF Alumnus

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“The Executive Master in Finance has been an invaluable experience in my life, both from a personal and a professional angle. The program has fulfilled all my expectations: it has both provided me with priceless knowledge and understanding - enabling me to “think outside the box” and giving me the opportunity to find a challenging and fulfilling job – and it has given me the opportunity to meet splendid people.”

Roland Cracco, CEO Interparking, 2006 EMF Alumnus

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"The EMF program has enabled me to substantially enhance my knowledge in matters such as Corporate Finance, Investments, Risk Management, Options and Derivatives all topics which I am now daily using in my function of CEO of Interparking, one of the European leaders in the car park business with more than 550 car park operations in Western Continental Europe."

Laurent Hermoye, Senior Associate Consultant at Bain & Co., 2008 EMF Alumnus

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“A very practical approach to finance, in a convivial atmosphere, contributing on a daily basis to my ability to integrate financial topics in the strategy of our clients."