"You become part of two alumni associations, which provides a great opportunity to connect with people from around the world".

Markus , Switzerland

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Markus Neier

About me

I am an M&A Strategy & Operations Consultant with international experience in Europe, Russia, Asia and the U.S., working in the automotive and technology sectors. I love to push myself out of my comfort zone, regardless of whether I’m undertaking challenging projects, sports or traveling the globe.

Markus Neier, Switzerland


Manager at EY / M&A Strategy & Operations

Program studied


Define your experience of the IE-SMU MBA in one word.


In what ways do you think the IE-SMU MBA has changed your life both professionally and personally?

The program makes you think about the bigger picture, leaving you wanting for more and ready to take risks. It teaches you to demand more from yourself, to make the most of your career and to strive to make a greater impact overall. On a professional level, you are thinking about your next big goal and reaching for it; while on a personal level, you start appreciating your leisure time and spending it more mindfully.

What advice would you give to students who are about to begin the program?

I would advise students to prepare mentally (and physically) as much as possible beforehand, as the program is intense and your free time will be limited.

What is your favorite memory of the IE-SMU MBA?

During the first residential week on the second day, we received a group case study that we had to submit the following morning. I still remember how we were up at 2 a.m. discussing possible solutions. Despite being stressful, it brought us much closer right at the start of the program, preparing us for what was to come in the next 13 months.

What is networking like in the IE-SMU MBA?

It comes naturally. Despite being from across the globe, you get to know your classmates very well with so many group case studies to work on together, and there are periods where you talk to them more than you normally do with your closest friends. The best thing about this is that you can later take advantage of the network you have built. Furthermore, through participation in the program, you become part of two alumni associations, which provides a great opportunity to connect with people from around the world.

Why did you choose to study the IE-SMU MBA?

I chose to study the IE-SMU MBA since I was able to do it without having to stop working. So, I didn’t have to lose any time building up my career while benefiting from a truly global experience at two prestigious schools—this combination is difficult to find elsewhere.

What are the residential weeks like? And how about the online periods?

The residential weeks are intense in terms of the workload but also fun—it’s great to connect with classmates and professors on a personal level.

The online periods are convenient because of their flexibility in terms of location, but the effort that is required to keep up with the fast pace of the program is not to be underestimated.

What was the Corporate Consulting Project like?

It was a unique experience—having an external project adds some extra pressure to perform due to the expectations of the client. Additionally, the project was a good opportunity to dive deep into the business processes of different companies and to build new connections.

How did you manage your time between work, the program and your personal life?

Honestly, I slept less, took part in less sports and had less of a personal life. But I started to appreciate my personal life much more after the program, and the experience helped me develop both personally and professionally.