Foundations of Scaling

Foundations of Scaling
Grow your venture into an iconic and purpose-driven firm

If starting a company is hard, scaling it is even more demanding. Most ventures do not overcome the “entrepreneurial crisis” at the transition from startup to scaleup and end up stalling.

The Foundations of Scaling program will equip you with the insights and abilities to grow your venture into an iconic, purpose-driven firm. Explicitly designed for founders, this program gathers entrepreneurs, mentors and world-class faculty experts, forging an invigorating learning environment. Over 12 high-impact months, you will experience a stimulating blend of theory and practice and acquire mission-critical skills to successfully scale your business.


Beneficios del programa
  • Learn from the best
    Learn from successful entrepreneurs and thought leaders, who will equip you with innovative frameworks, perspectives and tools to take your business to new heights.
  • Connect with high-caliber peers
    Share your trials and tribulations with fellow entrepreneurs and forge rich connections and a powerful support network for your learning journey and beyond.
  • Decide with confidence
    Sharpen your decision-making skills and acquire tools to grow your business exponentially while preserving its vision and culture.
  • Develop critical leadership skills
    Enhance your ability to lead and self-awareness by identifying facets of your life trajectory, personality and leadership style that might be impeding your success.
Is this program for you?

This program is designed for founders in C-level positions of mature startups who want to lead their companies to the next level. If your firm addresses important societal or environmental challenges and you are ready to embark on a high-octane learning journey with other founders at your stage and a world-class faculty, we look forward to meeting you.


Format: 12-month part-time program, with 7 on-campus residential sprints and 3 online sprints. 6 weeks in between sprints to implement what has been learned. The program will be delivered in English.

Core Program: 4 intensive two-and-a-half days residential sprints on 6 key knowledge tracks delivered on IESE’s state-of-the-art campuses in Barcelona, Madrid and Munich.

Elective Program: 3 optional residential sprints to dig deeper into each track plus 3 online workshops where founders and their senior leadership teams can work on the implementation of crucial scaling practices.


Sprint #1
The Scaling Journey
IESE Barcelona
3 days
Peer Council Meetings

Sprint #2
Leadership & Talent
IESE Madrid
2,5 days
Peer Council Meetings

Sprint #3
Organization, Finance & Governance
IESE Munich
2,5 days
Peer Council Meetings

Sprint #4
Strategy, Markets & Impact
IESE Barcelona
2,5 days
Peer Council Meetings


Sprint #5
Elective Sessions
IESE Madrid
2 days
Peer Council Meetings

Sprint #6
Leadership Team Workshop
Live Online
1/2 day

Sprint #7
Elective Sessions
IESE Munich
2 days
Peer Council Meetings

Sprint #8
Leadership Team Workshop
Live Online
1/2 day

Sprint #9
Elective Sessions
IESE Barcelona
2 days
Peer Council Meetings

Sprint #10
Leadership Team Workshop
Live Online
1/2 day


The curriculum comprises eight parallel tracks delivered throughout the program. Participants gain foundational knowledge in core sprints and tailor their learning journey through a range of elective

  1. Leadership: From Founder to Leader
  2. Talent: First Who, Then What
  3. Organization: Structure and Discipline
  4. Strategy: Gaining Clarity
  5. Markets: Growing Beyond Borders
  6. Impact: Doing Good, Doing well
  7. Finance: Fueling the Business
  8. Governance: Ownership Structure


  • 360º Leadership assessments
  • Scaling Readiness Assessment (McKinsey Leap Quotient)
  • Interactive workshops
  • Case studies
  • Fireside chats
  • Facilitated Peer Councils
  • Mentoring


The Foundations of Scaling program will be led by world-class academics, thought leaders and highly successful entrepreneurs with broad experience and expertise in the realm of startups and scaleups. IESE Professors Juan Roure and Thomas Klueter lead the initiative as Academic Directors.

Juan Roure
Academic Director, School of Founders and Professor of Entrepreneurship
PhD in Management, Stanford University
· Investor
· Founder of IESE’S Business Angel Network
· Advisor to investment firms
Thomas Klueter
Academic Director, School of Founders and Professor of Entrepreneurship
PhD in Management, University of Pennsylvania

Founders Club

IESE’S Founders Club is a community of international entrepreneurs who come to together to learn and grow. The Club’s mission is to help entrepreneurs build a better world. Members are entrepreneurs who lead fast-growing, small and medium-sized firms.

Participants in the Foundations of Scaling program are automatically admitted and earn a one-year membership in the Club.

Member benefits
The Club offers diverse resources for entrepreneurs and their teams:

Peer Councils – Peer coaching groups of six to eight founders for connection and reflection, facilitated by an experienced business coach
Mentor network – Access to the advice of highly successful scaleup entrepreneurs and experts
Concierge service – A personalized concierge service delivered by the School of Founders team to help you find the resources you need to scale your businesses
Online community – Tools for networking and knowledge sharing
Events – Expert talks and social events
Co-founder status – All participants of the first Foundations of Scaling program gain co-founder status of the Founders Club and are invited to participate in its governance.

Selected members of the Founders Club and mentors

  • Pepe Agell, Chartboost
  • Henrik Agrell, TMC
  • Elena Betés, Rastreator
  • Timo Buetefisch, Cooltra
  • Lucas Carné, Privalia
  • Roger Casals, PasswordBank
  • Ignasi Costas, RCD
  • Gerry Heydenreich, BuyVIP
  • Philipp Hillenbrand, Rocket Internet
  • Germán Loewe, Netquest
  • Alan Poensgen, Westwing
  • Mauricio Prieto, eDreams
  • Pau Sabrià, Olapic
  • Marc Subirats, Advanced Medical
  • Oriol Vila, Holaluz
  • Pep Viladomat, Heywood & Sons

Dates and location

Part-time, face-to-face and live online.
Dates to be confirmed.

CORE PROGRAM: Barcelona and Madrid.

ELECTIVE PROGRAM: Madrid, Munich, Barcelona and live online.

Admissions and fees


Fees to be confirmed.


An Admissions Committee thoroughly reviews every application. Due to class-size constraints and the need to ensure a balanced mix of participants, it is possible that even highly qualified applicants may not be admitted.

In partnership with Leap by McKinsey


#1 in Executive Education 2015-2020 by Financial Times | IESE Business School
#2 in Executive Education 2022 by Financial Times | IESE Business School
#3 in Open Programs 2022 by Financial Times | IESE Business School

For more information:

Sebastian Ross
+34 619 217 916
Director School of Founders