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Bo-Erik Abrahamsson

Degree:

MBA

Location:

Switzerland

Industry:

Technology

Year:

2015-16

By Bo-Erik Abrahamsson

About me

I don’t think this blog makes much sense if you as a reader don’t have a clue about who is writing. So this entry will be a very quick introduction where I tell you about where I’ve lived in the world and a few of the projects I was working on before coming to Oxford.

A bit over twenty-five years ago, I was born on a grain farm in southern Sweden. Growing up, I spent half my time driving tractors and the other half playing video games. this taught me two combined lessons: firstly, that I would never in a lifetime want to take over my family’s farm, and secondly all my hours of playing Pokémon somehow taught me fluent English. So at age 16 I left farming behind and moved to the city to attend an all-English high school program called the International Baccalaureate (IB). I was extremely lucky to get this chance, and it has since propelled me out on a journey around the world that I’m still enjoying to this day. After a gap year of backpacking in 2008-2009, I spent three years studying business and Chinese at King’s College London and the University of Hong Kong. This, in turn, made me much more interested in Asian emerging markets and Chinese language + culture. So after a few internships at HSBC and Procter & Gamble, my first job after undergrad was at a severely disorganized ecommerce startup in Kuala Lumpur (Lazada, owned by Rocket Internet). It didn’t last long, but I learned more about management, operations and entrepreneurship in those few months than I had picked up during three years of formal education. So after it crashed I headed to the safe, stable environment of Procter & Gamble’s European HQ in Geneva, Switzerland. P&G is a fantastic employer, and I am eternally grateful for all the training and leadership development opportunities they provided me with. Since it was also a job which stressed work/life balance, I could use my newfound free time to develop a few startups in my free time. Some crashed (drone-to-home.com very literally so!) but others are still going strong. If you are interested, you can have a look at the links below for a few of the ones I am still involved with:

www.Chinofy.co – book translations and publishing from English to Chinese

www.ReadingForChange.ch – social enterprise in the field of education

www.TravellingToddlers.com – travel website with advice for parents travelling with children

www.GenevaAccelerator.com – a small startup accelerator I set up with a group of friends in Geneva to help each other’s ventures out

After a few years in Geneva, however, my yearning for Asia began to grow stronger once again. So after a few months of intense job hunting and countless skype interviews, I managed to fulfill my dream of getting a job in tech in Singapore, by joining Twitter’s strategy & operations team. This was at the beginning of 2015, and I was thrilled to return to the continent of my dreams. One week after I started, something even more amazing happened: I found out that the application I had sent in to Oxford a few months before had been successful, and I would be able to start my MBA in September the same year. This led to a very interesting conversation with my manager (“thanks for hiring me – I have to leave in a few months”), but I was lucky enough to have the most supportive and understanding manager the world has ever seen. He not only let me work on the biggest, most impactful projects during my time at Twitter, but also gave me an offer to come back after my MBA is completed.

So now I’m starting out my MBA here at Oxford, and the year is promising out to be absolutely outstanding. There will be lots of studies and student life, but I also intend to take my startups to the next level.

In this short summary, I left out a lot of information so feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions that went unanswered!

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