Saransh Chaudhary

"The course structure was diligently designed to cover a wide range of topics that encompassed various domains of business and finance that I now find useful in my professional life."

Course: BSc Accounting and Finance
Year of graduation: 2016

What do you do now? What do you enjoy about what you do now?

I am currently leading a research-driven pharmaceutical company in India. My time is split between new drug development in my capacity as the CEO of the research division, and overall company strategy, including core corporate finance activities like fundraising, mergers & acquisitions, asset divestments, out-licensing etc.

The process of drug development is invariably the most enjoyable. I am fascinated with the scientific method of hypothesis testing and over the years I have come to admire and respect this challenging, yet remarkably rewarding vocation.

Why did you choose to study at the Business School?

I had a keen interest in finance, company valuation and capital markets and I knew that this was an area I wanted to pursue after high school. My choice of studying at the Business School was heavily influenced by the location and I appreciated that studying accounting and finance in one of the world’s largest financial centres (London) would be an incredible exposure and learning opportunity.

Once I decided on London, the Business School was among my top preferences as it was consistently ranked among the top schools for accounting and finance. The course structure was diligently designed to cover a wide range of topics that encompassed various domains of business and finance that I now find useful in my professional life. It was also important to me that I study alongside a diverse group of peers and the Business School had one of the most internationally diverse group of students.

How has the Business School supported you in your career journey, and helped you get to where you are today?

I credit the quality of my education at the Business School for a lot of my professional achievements. In addition to the course content, the method of teaching at the Business School is what stood out the most for me. The contextual exemplification of topics, especially ones that would otherwise be unmotivating, really helped my learning process. It is that style of learning that perhaps played a huge role in my career when I pivoted into drug development and got exposed to a completely different knowledge environment.

What did you enjoy most about your course?

Though there are a lot of things that stand out about the course, the class discussions on real-world case studies and the empirical research-based coursework are the two things that I enjoyed the most. I have vivid memories of discussing game theory via the Airbus vs. Boeing case study in the strategy class and the various discussions on the past accounting scandals and how they shaped the modern accounting principles in the accounting class. These discussions have helped lay strong foundations of core principles that are remarkably useful in real life.

What was the hardest part of your course?

The hardest part of the course was the final year dissertation. Albeit challenging, it was a very rewarding experience as the project spanned over the entire year and provided a unique opportunity to have close interactions with my dissertation advisor and industry leaders.

Were there any lecturers who particularly inspired you?

The entire academic staff at the Business School was brilliant. A special mention to my course director and accounting professor, Dr Danielle Lyssimachou for her guidance and invaluable support in shaping my career, and to my professor for strategy, Dr Aneesh Banerjee, for his ingenious teaching style and business insight.

What was your favourite part of being a Business School student?

My favourite part of being a student at the Business School was the vibrant, cosmopolitan city of London. The school is located in the heart of the city (Zone 1), a stone’s throw away from anything you could need to make yourself comfortable, especially as an international student. London began to feel like home in no time and made the business school experience even better.

If you could give one piece of advice to a prospective Accounting & Finance student, what would it be?

This is an investment in your future that you won’t regret. To benefit the most out of your time at the Business School and in London, keep an open mind, interact with as many people as you can, seize every opportunity to engage with the academic staff, channel your inner MasterChef and brace yourself for an enriching & rewarding experience.

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