Foundations of Finance

Amsterdam Institute of Finance

How long?

  • 5 days
  • blended

What are the topics?

Amsterdam Institute of Finance


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Finance is an integral and most important component of any business, so everyone needs to improve their competence in this area. Finance courses will ...


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Who should attend

Typical Foundations of Finance participants are ambitious professionals in banking, investment or corporate finance environments who require a solid foundation on which to build, or continue building, a successful career in finance. Professionals in other fields, with an interest or need to understand the principles of finance, will also greatly benefit from this program. Foundations of Finance can be used as a stepping stone to more advanced AIF courses.

Previous participants have come from banks, consultancies, law firms, public sector organizations and private sector companies. Their job titles included: Advisors, Analysts, Business Managers, Compliance Officers, Consultants, Directors, General Counsel, Lawyers and Managers.

About the course

A compact and intensive blended learning program, Foundations of Finance is designed to deliver in a short period of time a solid foundation of the basic insights modern financial decision making. The program will be particularly helpful for professionals whose work is (or will be) related to finance but lacks the necessary finance knowledge.

The program will be particularly valuable for managers involved with high-growth firms, either on the buy side (as potential investors) or in the sell side (as corporate managers). Attention will be given to firms operating in the service and in the technology sectors, and on the impact of sustainability and social responsibility on corporate value drivers.

By attending this program you will learn the main principles underlying corporate finance, and gain practical experience with real-world applications through case studies and spreadsheet exercises.

Topics covered in the program

  • Performance assessment and value drivers
  • Sustainability and social responsibility
  • Project and company valuation
  • Financial structure design
  • Equity financing and transactions
  • Risk management

How you will benefit

  • Learn to identify and forecast the key drivers of a company’s (or project’s) future cash flows and risks, with the ultimate goal of making value-enhancing financial decisions
  • Gain a broad set of skills to succeed in equity valuation, investments, and in acquisitions
  • Deepen your knowledge of risk management and learn how to manage financial and non-financial risks
  • Understand how valuation and value creation can be affected by corporate sustainability and social responsibility.

Foundations of Finance is taught using a blended learning approach – combining traditional in-residence classroom teaching with web-based learning and reducing time spent away from the office and home: 80% of the program will be taught in a classic classroom (“in-residence”) setting, with an additional 20% being incorporated in web-based learning materials. The majority of the web-based learning will be completed as preparation for the in-residence classroom time, ensuring all participants come together with the same pre-requisite knowledge about financial concepts.


Online Learning - preparation for the in-residence program

Participants will be given prior access to online learning materials covering prerequisite knowledge about finance concepts. The materials are designed for participants with little prior financial knowledge. The videos cover the following topics:

  • Discounting and the concept of present value
  • Financial calculus (e.g. standard deviation and correlation)
  • Basic spreadsheet functions for financial calculus
  • Basics of financial statements
  • Understanding and interpreting of accounting information from financial statements

In-residence Program

The program will be a blend of lectures, case studies and practical, hands-on excercises. We will focus on the following topics

Introduction to Value Creation and Value Drivers

  • Performance analysis and understanding key value drivers
  • Determining and forecasting future free cash flow
  • Capital budgeting: net present value and other criteria
  • Sustainability and social responsibility

Case study: A small firm specializing in the design and manufacture of electronic components faces financial pressure because of an aggressive product development strategy. The case examines the process of forecasting financial cash flows, as well as project valuation.

Risk and the Cost of Capital

  • Assessing equity risk factors
  • Assessing credit risk and the cost of debt
  • Leverage and firm value
  • The cost of capital and WACC

Case study: Properly assessing risk factors and the cost of capital for a large energy company. The case discusses the challenges faced in the estimation of the cost of capital in large multidivisional firm in the energy sector.

Valuing Companies using Key Value-Drivers

  • Multiples-based valuation
  • Projecting Free Cash Flow (FCF)
  • Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) approaches to valuation
  • Sensitivity and scenario analyses: what do we learn about key value drivers?

Case study: DCF in practice: valuing an internet company.

Corporate Finance and Financial Management

  • Dividends a firm value
  • Taxes and leverage
  • Managing financial distress
  • Raising capital and equity dilution
  • Market timing

Case study: Financing growth. The case illustrates the problems faced by a technology company entering a new sector and challenging a large incumbent firm and how this firm creatively financed its substantial capital expenditures.

Risk Management

  • Risk management essentials
  • The benefits of risk management
  • Types of risk: currency risk, credit risk, etc.
  • Introduction to risk management tools: Futures, Forwards, Swaps, Options

Case study: Implementing risk management. This case examines the challenges faced by an industrial corporation to implement a company-wide integrated risk management program and its contribution to corporate profitability.


Paolo Fulghieri

  Finance professor Paolo Fulghieri''s research interests are in corporate finance, entrepreneurial finance and financial intermediation, with a special focus on venture capital and initial public offerings.  As part of his research activity, he has published extensively in leading finance ...

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Foundations of Finance at Amsterdam Institute of Finance

From  EUR 6 100$7,367
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Read more about Finance

During Finance courses, you will get acquainted with a huge number of financial analyst tools and learn how to work with them. So, you will learn how to make and analyze financial reporting, calculate the main financial indicators of the company and ...

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