Laurent Simon

What and when did you study at INSEAD? 

I attended the Executive Program called Transition To General Management (TGM) in 2014. I spent 50% of my time in Fontainebleau and 50% in Singapore [I did my MBA in 2002-03 at the Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM) and Keio Daigaku (Japan). Nobody’s perfect!

How did INSEAD transform your life? What is your favourite memory from your time at INSEAD?

First and foremost, INSEAD enabled me to make great friends, from many walks of life (background, culture, experience). Second, INSEAD helped me redefine the way I think and behave. The INSEAD experience was not just about getting a boost in my career—it also offered new perspectives and friendships that transformed my life.

Some of my favourite INSEAD memories are: doing yoga early morning before the classes in Fontainebleau, with a small group of peers. Or running in MacRitchie Reservoir natural trail in Singapore with friends every weekend. It’s all about ‘The smell of the place’ as Prof. Sumantra Ghoshal would say 😉

How did you end up in this part of the world?

My wife Eiko and I were living in Singapore since 2014. In March 2020 we had a wonderful idea: let’s spend a few weeks exploring the Southern Island of New Zealand! After two Great Walks, we got stranded in New Zealand… Due to Covid, we were not allowed to return to Singapore until July 2020. After a few days of discussion, Eiko and I eventually decided to stay and rebuild our lives in Aotearoa (Māori name for NZ, which means ‘the Land of the White Cloud’)…

What are your aims for the Alumni Association?

My overarching goal is to continue to strengthen engagement in the Alumni community, both in NZ and across the Ditch. This can be achieved via regular Social Drinks and ‘Lucky Dip dinners’. We are also enabling Alumni to contribute to Social Impact projects.

Last but not least, we are organising hybrid events (both in physical locations and online), across Australia & NZ. Beyond regional collaboration within INSEAD, we are starting to establish good connections with the Alumni communities of the following    schools: HBS, LSE, Stanford, Columbia, IMD, HEC, MIT, etc. If you’d like to know more, please feel free to contact me directly or join the ANZ Aluminary Group. You can download the app and sign up to the group here: (Android) or (Apple)