Business Finance (BF)

IMD Executive Education

How long?

  • 5 weeks
  • online

IMD Executive Education


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Who should attend

To get ahead in business today, you need an understanding of the fundamentals of finance. You may be a great manager in your chosen field, but in the end, what distinguishes career opportunities in many companies is your knowledge of finance.

About the course

  • Understand the key concepts that underpin accounting
  • Assess risk and investment opportunities accurately
  • Discover better ways to mitigate risk when structuring capital projects
  • Improve your organization's operational and financial performance

Become confident in finance with this personalized online program

Already a successful manager, your main goal is to improve your financial knowledge to make better business decisions. You realize a deeper knowledge of finance and accounting offers you the edge over others in your industry.

Finance Fundamentals for Executives gives you a clear understanding of your own company's financials - and the impact you can make on them. You will become comfortable with financial statements and financial analysis, and able to make valid risk assessments of competing expenditures and cost-reduction projects.

Equipped with a new financial tool-set, you will formulate strategies that maximize value for your organization.


This online course is 8 weeks long. It's long enough for you to apply to your own working context what you learn and to build solid foundations in finance. Over the 8 weeks of courses, here's what you will learn:

Unit 1: Key financial statements

  • Acquire an overview of the three main financial statements – the balance sheet, the income statement and the cash flow statement – and key financial and accounting concepts.
  • Use real examples to see how these theories are applied to financial statements.

Unit 2: Financial analysis

  • Learn how to use ratios to compare company performance to its own history or to other companies.
  • Calculate and interpret key ratios for your own business and identify managerial implications, for example when dealing with customers and suppliers.

Unit 3: Risk & capital markets

  • Examine the relationship between risk and return using concepts such as the capital asset pricing model, risk-free rates, credit spreads, market risk premium, and company beta.
  • Learn how to assess the risk versus return for debt and equity assets, and to calculate the WACC for your company or unit.

Unit 4: Managerial finance & value creation

  • Understand ROIC’s role in value creation and the links between different drivers available to management to improve operational performance: profitability, efficiency, working capital, and leverage.
  • Compute your firm’s ROIC and identify areas where you can help to improve it.

Unit 5: Time value of money

  • Reflect on the time value of money and discover tools and practical applications where it can be implemented, such as with bond valuations, loans, leasing, and mortgages.
  • Compute parameters such as interest rate, payment and borrowing amount for a bank loan, given a set of constraints.

Unit 6: Capital budgeting tools

  • Discover project valuation criteria such as net present value, internal rate of return, payback and the profitability index.
  • Learn how to: choose between investment projects; allocate capital to projects that add value; decide between capital expenditure or cost reduction projects; and evaluate brands.

Unit 7: Project valuation tools & application

  • Study how to forecast cash flows in real projects and to model them in Excel.
  • Work on a case study with a “go or no go” decision. Discuss sensitivity analysis and risk thinking.

Unit 8: Strategic investment decisions

  • Observe managerial decisions and the commercial implications of NPV regarding investment project valuation.
  • Understand how to structure projects and how to assess and mitigate their risks.
  • Learn how financial tools can be used for day-to-day decisions such as pricing, bidding or supplier negotiation.

Your Professional Learning Coach

How we are helping you

You will have a dedicated professional learning coach, making sure you receive a highly individualized learning experience.

Your designated professional learning coach accompanies you through your 8-week learning journey on this Business Finance online course. They provide support and feedback as you apply your learning straight away in the workplace, where it has an immediate impact.

Their input helps you translate your learning to your particular context. By spreading this feedback regularly throughout the program, you'll be sure to embed your ongoing learning directly in your daily work.

Your professional learning coach interacts with you via video, in writing and over the phone. You have calls, spread across the 8-weeks, at intervals that consolidate your learning.

Your learning coach helps you to:

  • Define your learning objectives
  • Review your progress on a weekly basis
  • Overcome your challenges
  • Translate what you learn to your own context


Nuno Fernandes

Professor Fernandes works with senior leaders and executive committees to help them on investment selection, financial strategies, M&As, international investments, risk analysis and general governance. Professor Fernandes is a specialist on international financial markets, portfolio manageme...

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Business Finance (BF) at IMD Executive Education

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Coursalytics is an independent platform to find, compare, and book executive courses. Coursalytics is not endorsed by, sponsored by, or otherwise affiliated with any business school or university.

Full disclaimer.

Because of COVID-19, many providers are cancelling or postponing in-person programs or providing online participation options.

We are happy to help you find a suitable online alternative.