Top Business Schools in France for International Students

Business Schools in France: A Detailed Guide

Business Schools in France: A Detailed Guide

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Read about popular business schools in France. Know the list of colleges and top MBA options an Indian student has to study business administration in France.

Rahul Srivastava
Updated on:  12 Mar 2024  | Reviewed By: 
| 4.75K | 6  min read

France is no longer just a tourist destination. A growing number of international students choose it as their study destination. Did you know that the country boasts of 3900 private and public institutions of higher education or that 41 French schools feature in the top in Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021?

Indian students who go to French Universities for higher studies are steadily increasing too. In fact, France is set to welcome almost 20000 Indian students by 2025. Even though France, like most other countries, has currently stopped student immigration in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, it had earlier announced an easy visa process, an increase in the number of courses that could be taken in English, and even a revised fee structure - all in a bid to attract international students. 

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A growing number of Indian students who aspire for an international MBA degree are looking at France as a viable option. Some of the reasons for opting for an MBA degree from France are -

  • list items France is home to some of the most prestigious business schools in the world, right from INSEAD that is ranked third globally, to HEC Paris, ESSEC Business school, etc. 
  • list items The ability to learn from industry leaders and the plethora of opportunities that the country offers to international students in the form of internships with global leaders. The country also offers networking opportunities all over Europe. 
  • list items The niche courses offered by leading universities, and a large number of scholarships available for Indian students are other reasons that attract Indian students for an MBA to France. 

List of top MBA colleges in France

  • list items INSEAD Business School - Ranked first in the world by Financial Times Global MBA Ranking 2021, this school offers a multicultural experience to students. Students can customize their 10-months full-time MBA at INSEAD by choosing from 75 electives (in 10 academic fields) that the school offers. Students have the chance to take an elective at Wharton and Kellogg or even travel to countries like China, India, or the Middle East for hands-on business learning. The school accepts students with a GMAT score between 670 and 750. The current tuition fee at INSEAD is INR 77.4 lakhs. 
  • list items HEC Paris - The MBA program of HEC Paris has been ranked first in Europe by the Financial Times in 2020. The 16-month full-time business program at the school is known to give students a hands-on learning experience. Through its 14 core courses and more than 70 electives, students are exposed to an entrepreneurial environment here. The business school intakes MBA students twice a year - in September and in January. The tuition fee for an MBA at HEC Paris is € 76,000. The average GMAT score for students admitted in 2019 was 690. 
  • list items Grenoble Ecole de Management - Founded in 1984, this school is another top business school in France. In its 2021 ranking, The Economist ranked the MBA program of the school 5th in France while Financial Times, in its European Business School Ranking 2020, ranked the MBA program of the school 28th in Europe. The MBA program is for one year and students have to complete a final management project too. For September 2021 intake, students have to pay a tuition fee of €31,950. The triple-accredited school offers 8 specializations that students can use to customize their MBA. Students also get the chance to go on a study trip to Berlin. GMAT is required for some cases. Students who have a GMAT score above 650 will be eligible to apply for the GEM GMAT Merit Scholarship. 
  • list items ESSEC Business School - The school offers a 12 months full-time Global MBA program. QS Business Masters ranking 2020 ranked the global MBA program of the school 30th in the world. The school offers a holistic MBA experience and offers majors in Luxury Brand Management and Strategy and Digital Leadership. Students with an average GMAT score of 650 can apply to the school. Those choosing Luxury Brand Management as their major need to pay a tuition fee of €46,000 for the academic year 2021-2022 while those choosing a major in Strategy and Digital leadership at the Paris Campus have to pay a tuition fee of €46,000 for the AY 20121-2022. 
  • list items EDHEC Business School - The school offers a 10 months global MBA program that helps students get a 360 degree perspective on global business. QS Top MBA ranking ranked the program number one of return in investment. The program has one of the shortest (20 months) payback on investment. Students get to study core fundamentals for seven months, a month of specialization, and two months doing a tailored MBA project. The program also includes two global business trips. Students with a good GMAT score are accepted for the program. The tuition fee for the global MBA program here is €44,000. 

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Besides the above-mentioned top five colleges, France also offers other good MBA options. They are as follows:

  • list items Sorbonne Graduate Business School
  • list items Audencia Nantes School of Management
  • list items EMYLON Business School
  • list items IÉSEG School of Management, Paris
  • list items IAE Aix Graduate School of Management



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Common eligibility criteria for applying to business schools in France 

Even though different universities have different eligibility criteria for an MBA, some of the common ones that international students need to fulfill when applying to business schools in France are as follows:

  • list items A Bachelor’s degree or a qualification that is equivalent  to French Baccalaureate
  • list items A valid GMAT or GRE score
  • list items A valid TOEFL or IELTS score 
  • list items Depending on the university, a work experience of 3 to 4 years

Application procedure at French Business schools 

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Work visa 

  • list items Students who are headed for an MBA in France need to apply for the Visa de long séjour etudes. This visa allows them to stay for the entire duration of their program. This visa also acts as a residence permit. 
  • list items International students are allowed to work 964 hours a year during their studies, provided they maintain their grades. 
  • list items After their graduation, students holding an MBA degree can apply for non-renewable one-year temporary residence permits. Under this permit, they would be allowed to work up to 60% of a normal working week. During this period, they are allowed to search for a full-time job. 
  • list items Once an international student gets a full-time job that pays them 1.5 times the minimum wage, they are eligible to apply for a change in their visa status - from student to full-time employee.  They can also apply for a work permit. 
  • list items Indian students holding a Master’s degree from France can additionally obtain five-year visas. 


Armed with all the above knowledge, we are sure you are now ready to apply to your dream business school in France. Still need help with your la République study dream? Then get in touch with GyanDhan now and get all the help you need for your French higher study dream and that too for free! 

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