Overview

Taught by the same distinguished faculty who teach in Wharton’s top-ranked MBA program, the Advanced Finance Program is for executives who need to master the necessary financial skills to remain at the leading edge of their professions. Expand your knowledge and deepen your expertise in the areas of corporate finance, investment strategies, private equity, mergers and acquisitions, and venture capital by taking a total of six open-enrollment finance programs within two years.

Upon completion of the Advanced Finance Program, you will be granted Wharton alumni status and gain access to resources that facilitate professional growth through lifelong learning opportunities

Who Can Attend:

  • The Advanced Finance Program is for senior-level executives and high-potential professionals who wish to accelerate their career development in the area of modern finance. Additionally, executives working in roles where they need to significantly expand their understanding of finance or whose career mobility demands greater financial expertise will benefit
  • Ideal participants will have significant career and academic achievement and will currently be on a career progression that has involved consistently increasing levels of responsibility.
  • Fluency in English, written and spoken, is required for participation in Wharton executive education programs unless otherwise indicated.
  • The Admissions Committee may request that applicants submit academic records and a professional letter of recommendation as part of the admission process. If requested, this letter must be written by someone who can attest to your professional achievements and provide additional information about your career goals.

Program Highlights & Benefits

  • Enjoy the flexibility of starting your learning journey in a time frame that aligns with your professional goals and allows you to learn while you work
  • Build a global network through the dynamic Wharton learning community in which you will be immersed
  • Experience individual coaching and support from Wharton’s team of expert executive coaches
  • Achieve Wharton alumni status

Experience & Impact

The Advanced Finance Program provides an exclusive, tailored learning journey that allows you to accelerate your learning development in a way that complements your current knowledge base and helps you meet your career goals. You will be taught by the same Wharton faculty who teach in our top-ranked MBA program. Also, the learning environment in many of our finance programs is further enriched by renowned industry leaders and experts who reveal best practices and share highly relevant experiences from the industry front lines.

Throughout your learning journey, you will experience highly personalized service from Wharton. From the application process and program selection, to executive coaching and one-on-one feedback, you will have world-renowned business experts to support and guide you.

Upon completion of the Advanced Finance Program, you will return to your organization with:

  • Advanced financial acumen that will distinguish you professionally.
  • Strategic insight that will strengthen your financial leadership skills as well as enhance your professional value to your company.
  • A powerful network of peers and industry leaders from a variety of industries and business disciplines.

Programs Description

The Advanced Finance Program consists of six open-enrollment finance programs and is designed to be completed within two years. Choose from the following programs:

Many institutional investors, fund managers, and financial advisors have been raising their targets for real estate allocations in recent years. Some classes of real estate investments can yield solid returns and provide good diversification. Others are higher risk, but potentially higher return, options compared to conventional assets of blue-chip stocks and bonds.

Assessing Commercial Real Estate Investments and Markets provides institutional investors and financial advisors with a complete picture of the pros and cons of the various ways to invest in commercial real estate. Participants will become a more discerning evaluator of offers and opportunities in the U.S. and globally. Beyond just improving your awareness of common investing pitfalls, you will also discover how to make real estate a more valuable slice of your client’s or institution’s diversified investment portfolio.

The Wharton faculty, who are the leading minds in real estate today, will explore the fundamental concepts around different commercial real estate asset classes such as hotels, apartment buildings, shopping centers, and office buildings, and the varied economic forces that drive their returns. The effect of location — including cities, countries, coasts, and neighborhoods — and their distinct risk and return characteristics will also be covered. You will investigate many real estate investment strategies: direct investment, investing in public equity, lending to real estate, investing in real estate debt, or investing in a company or private equity firm that is itself investing in real estate. The advantages and drawbacks of each will be thoroughly discussed, as well as the unique risks that accompany each approach. You will also hone your skills around global real estate investment, including diversifying your investments across countries, finding local partners, and assessing and hedging currency risks.

Participants will discover how best to incorporate commercial real estate into their overall investment strategy. The current state of the U.S. and global real estate market will be discussed, and you will grasp the nuances of managing risk during boom and bust periods. Interactive exercises, case studies, and small-group breakouts make for engaging and thought-provoking sessions

As a result of attending this program, you will gain a deeper understanding of the concepts, terminology, strategies, and opportunities that will enable you to confidently add both domestic and global real estate to your investment portfolio.

Course Modules

  • Growth, Booms, and Risk
  • Commercial Real Estate Risk and Returns
  • Differences Across Property Sectors
  • Portfolio Allocation to Real Estate
  • Public Investment and Private Equity Investment
  • Real Estate Debt Investments
  • Global Real Estate

Participants will learn how to:

  • Learn about various sectors of commercial real estate and the different options for investing in them
  • Discover how to balance risk and return in real estate investments
  • Gain clarity and confidence around evaluating potential real estate investment partners and opportunities
  • Understand the drivers of real estate markets and the effect of changes in the economy and tax code
  • Determine how best to fit real estate into an overall investment strategy
  • Find out how to locate overseas opportunities and manage the risk of investing globally

Course Start Date:

  • June 3 – 6, 2019

In Corporate Valuation, you will learn how to analyze and evaluate the financial implications of strategic and operating decisions. You will learn the correct way to do financial modeling and how to identify and avoid potential pitfalls and common mistakes. The result will be better decision-making and a better understanding of your organization.

By exploring the drivers behind value creation, you will acquire the requisite knowledge and tools to understand the impact of strategic, operational, and financial decisions on your organization’s ability to create value. You will gain increased clarity around the potential consequences of these decisions and leave this program equipped to apply this knowledge immediately to the business challenges facing your organization today.

Having such financial insight can be particularly crucial if your organization is seeking a new infusion of investment capital or is at the crossroads of a major business decision such as a merger, an acquisition, a business restructuring, or a buyout. The tools in this program will help you develop a better understanding of the opportunities and risks inherent to some business decisions.

Additionally, this program will help you become more effective at articulating to key stakeholders the implications of these decisions for your organization’s performance, competitive position, and opportunities for growth. As a result, you will be better able to communicate with chief financial officers, investment bankers, accountants, and other corporate finance professionals.

Corporate Valuation blends Wharton’s world-class academic rigor and quantitative analysis with practical, real-world applications. The program employs a host of instructional modalities to enhance the learning experience: in-class discussions, case work, small group breakout sessions, and role-playing.

Overall, this program will provide you with a structured and highly engaging learning environment in which you will apply to real-world scenarios the concepts and tools presented by Wharton’s renowned finance faculty and distinguished speakers.

Course Modules

  • Cost of Capital
  • Customer-Based Corporate Valuation
  • Financial Modeling
  • Financial Statement Analysis
  • Strategic and Financial Acquisitions

Participants will learn how to:

  • Calculate corporate valuations across a range of situations and for multiple purposes
  • Evaluate the financial implications of strategic decisions in different settings, including merger and acquisition targets, and leveraged buyout opportunities.
  • Analyze financial statements to better understand opportunities and risks
  • Recognize the limitations of different valuation techniques
  • Learn how to communicate to colleagues, investors, lenders, and others a clear financial strategy that will generate sustained, superior financial performance

Course Start Date:

  • June 3 – 7, 2019

Investment Strategies and Portfolio Management offers a comprehensive learning experience, bringing participants up to date on investment big picture concerns and on specific asset classes.

Wharton’s Finance faculty provide actionable theories and practical tools for addressing asset allocation, risk management, performance measurement, and investment policies, as well as for dealing effectively with today’s more knowledgeable and active investors.

Then the program explores individual asset classes. Wharton’s finance experts share their knowledge of bonds, hedge funds, private equity, derivatives, real estate, and international markets in sessions designed to help participants better understand when to include these investments in their portfolios.

Industry experts offer real-world experience and expertise, helping participants understand how theories and frameworks can be put into practice. They also explore the impacts of emerging technology on the industry, including algorithmic and high-frequency trading. In addition, each session captures the experience and insights of the internationally diverse group of participants who represent a wide range of investment backgrounds and philosophies.

Course Modules

  • Modern Portfolio Theory
  • Performance Measurement
  • Evaluating Managers and Strategies
  • Advanced Asset Allocation
  • Investment Policy
  • Outlook for the Economy and Navigating Its Risk

Participants will learn how to:

  • Increase your understanding of modern portfolio theory and behavioral finance
  • Improve your ability to measure investment performance
  • Learn new asset allocation tools
  • Recognize when to choose active managers versus passive investments
  • Understand the opportunities and risks of bonds, hedge funds, private equity, real estate, international markets, and derivatives
  • Better navigate and manage risk
  • Gain insights into the global economy and potential future market disruptions

Course Start Date:

  • June 10 – 14, 2019

Despite the fact that 8 out of 10 mergers and acquisitions fail, the rate of M&A activity worldwide continues to break records. As businesses flush with cash look to consolidate to become more competitive, they view mergers as a way to reduce their costs of doing business while increasing their revenue from greater market share.

Through Wharton’s Mergers and Acquisitions program, you will learn how to integrate the strategic, managerial, economic, and financial decisions that affect the execution of mergers and acquisitions. You and your peers will gain new insight into why acquisition strategy is related to all elements of the process, including valuation, negotiation, deal structure, due diligence, and integration.

Wharton faculty — led by Robert Holthausen, an expert on corporate evaluation who serves as editor of the Journal of Accounting and Economics — apply their field-based research and the latest strategic insights to help you navigate the complex minefield of M&A activity.

Faculty will facilitate discussions and case studies, and several real-world M&A simulations, enabling you to gain experience in successfully navigating a transaction while dealing with a wide array of issues, from taxation to due diligence to anti-trust questions. Because the program attracts global finance leaders and because its faculty work with organizations based around the world, the program provides insights and perspectives into the growing number of cross-border acquisitions. Developed to improve your odds for success, Mergers and Acquisitions will teach you strategies you can hone and execute quickly for measurable results.

Course Modules

  • Strategic Assessment
  • Integration
  • Valuation
  • Negotiation Workshop
  • Due Diligence
  • Structuring Acquisitions
  • Managing Strategic Alliances
  • M&A Computer Simulation
  • Investment Banker Perspectives
  • Anti-Trust Issues
  • Think from an investment banker’s perspective
  • Evaluate strategic acquisitions using a number of tools and frameworks
  • Effectively negotiate and manage strategic alliances
  • Gain more expertise in conducting due diligence and other steps in M&A activity

Participants will learn how to:

  • Determine a rationale, select and value acquisition targets, and evaluate the long-term potential of a partnership
  • Understand how to manage the complexities of the merger process
  • Identify acquisition strategies, execute and close deals, and integrate acquisitions successfully
  • Learn from faculty experts, Wharton alumni with extensive M&A involvement, and a cross-section of experienced senior leaders from different industries

Course Start Date:

  • June 9 – 14, 2019

This innovative program provides an ideal combination of lectures by Wharton finance faculty and Wharton alumni who are finance leaders in the private equity industry. Participants will have an opportunity to focus on areas of individual interest, such as the limited partners perspective and private equity in emerging markets. There will also be time for case studies and group presentations.

Participants will learn the landscape of the private equity space and be exposed to concepts and tools — shaped by the ongoing research of Wharton Private Equity Professor Bilge Yilmaz — that are used by private equity managers today. Case studies are current, relevant, and designed to maximize peer and faculty interaction.

Course Modules

  • Fund Structure
  • Leveraged Buyout Model and Comparables Analysis
  • Deal Origination, Transaction, and Execution
  • Value Creation With Operations and Negotiation
  • Advanced And Best Practices In Private Equity
  • Commercial Due Diligence
  • The Limited Partners’ Perspective
  • Growth Equity
  • Middle Market Private Equity
  • Private Equity In Emerging Economies

Participants will learn how to:

  • Learn the various stages of investment, from deal origination through harvesting returns
  • Study tools that private equity firms use to structure and finance a deal, create value, and determine exit timing
  • Understand the key drivers in the private equity market, and key differences between funds’ strategies
  • Analyze a deal from the different points of view of a private equity firm and a bank
  • Work in teams to review actual deal scenarios and present deal recommendations to Wharton faculty and industry experts for immediate feedback and input
  • Gain experience in navigating the complex arena of global private equity and emerging markets

Course Start Date:

  • April 8 – 12, 2019
  • November 4 – 8, 2019

Increasingly, CFOs are expected to be more strategic decision makers in the business, as noted by the growing trend of promoting chief financial officers to the CEO role, which has occurred in recent years at companies like UPS, PepsiCo, and Siemens AG in recent years.

The program elevates the CFO role to one of a “value integrator,” a term coined by IBM in its Global CEO Study to describe the best-performing CFOs. These leaders excel at taking highly unstructured and somewhat ambiguous situations and putting structure around them by integrating information from numerous internal sources. You will enhance your ability to forecast, measure, and monitor business performance; manage risk; and generate predictive insights.

Wharton faculty apply their field-based research and the latest strategic insights to help you broaden your perspective on how to make your organization more competitive.

The program offers a strategic toolbox to help you be a better advisor to and decision maker for your company. Wharton creates a live lab where you and your peers, also seasoned CFOs, learn from real-life case examples and apply frameworks to different situations that go beyond the profit and loss statement — enabling you to drive strategic investments for the future. You will leave the program better equipped to handle internal and external pressures, including the growing role of activist shareholders.

In sum, this program enables you to focus more externally on the fast-paced changes that are redefining your business and be viewed as key member of the executive leadership team.

Course Modules

  • Link Between Corporate Strategy and Value Creation
    • Driving Organic Growth
    • Measuring Performance
  • Critical Thinking
  • Creating and Sustaining Competitive Advantage
  • Strategy Audit and Connected Strategy
  • Managing Flexibility Using Real Options
  • Strategic Persuasion
  • Designing the Corporate Portfolio

Participants will learn how to:

  • Expand your leadership skills and increase your capacity as a trusted advisor
  • Develop more effective operational strategies for building value in and managing operational risk throughout your organization
  • Manage risk and uncertainty
  • Leverage a suite of tools to identify and drive profitable sources of revenue growth
  • Think creatively and design opportunities to position your company for the future

Course Start Date:

  • April 15 – 19, 2019
  • October 28 – November 1, 2019

Value Creation and Growth through Innovative Corporate Finance makes use of Wharton’s world-class academic and theoretical finance research expertise, along with rigorous quantitative analysis and real-world application. This program employs a variety of instructional modalities that enhance the learning experience, including in-class discussions, case work, small group breakout sessions, and role playing.

Wharton finance faculty — globally recognized for their research — are responsible for designing and conducting this program, while the participants come from top-ranked international companies. Together, you will explore new and key finance concepts, and expand your global outlook while enhancing your knowledge and performance.

In Value Creation and Growth through Innovative Corporate Finance, you will address issues like the capital structure question: Raise funds through debt, equity, or a combination of both? You will also explore real-time concerns like managing cross-border risks in today’s global economy, and valuing and assessing the financial and risk implications of strategic decisions.

Harnessing these insights can give your organization a competitive advantage in a marketplace where companies are seeking new ways to procure capital, engage in mergers and acquisitions, and increasingly make high-value cross-border decisions.

Course Modules

  • Capital Structure: Debt vs. Equity; Capital Markets
  • Global Trends: Macroeconomics, Regulation, and Financial Technology
  • International Corporate Finance: Valuation and Risk
  • Mergers & Acquisitions

Participants will learn how to:

  • Consider how your financial institution or firm can effectively manage risk in today’s uncertain economy
  • Determine whether it is more efficient to take on debt, offer equity, or do a combination of both when making capital structure decisions
  • Examine how valuation models change when making international financial decisions
  • Gain insight into the direction of the global economy, and how rising interest rates and regulatory changes will impact your corporate financial decisions
  • Understand the complexities of mergers and acquisitions

Course Start Date:

  • April 29 – May 3, 2019
  • November 11 – 15, 2019

Venture capitalists generally take a leap of faith with a business idea or founder when choosing to invest in a start-up. They have to value a company whose future financial success hinges on an unproven technology or product that hasn’t been fully commercialized or has yet to generate any revenue. And because of the longer time horizon to profitability and a greater degree of uncertainty of achieving success, VC has a risk-return profile that is significantly different from that of a conventional, established business with predictable revenues. As a result, the tools and valuation methods venture capitalists use to assess a business without any tangible assets are different, too.

Venture Capital starts with a discussion of how VC funds are organized, how investments are selected, and how due diligence is conducted. Participants will examine case studies that detail a transaction from beginning to end. In this manner, participants will see how a deal is structured, learn more about the differing incentives of a VC fund and entrepreneurs, and gain a deeper understanding of venture investing. This program will provide participants with a rigorous framework both to evaluate investment opportunities and to manage a multi-stage investment process in an innovative firm.

Course Modules

  • Limited Partner/General Partner Negotiation and Contracting
  • The VC Business Model: Sourcing, Screening, and Selection
  • Venture Capital Valuation Method
  • Term Sheets: The Venture Capitalist’s and Entrepreneur’s perspectives
  • Deal Sourcing
  • Managing Innovative Processes
  • Later-Round Financing
  • Preferred Stock Valuation
  • Exit Strategies

Participants will learn how to:

  • Learn how VC funds are structured, how they operate, and why organizational structure matters to limited partners, general partners, and even founders
  • Understand how to raise capital from limited partners, including the design of partnership agreements that enable effective relationships
  • Develop a systematic way to screen, analyze, and value high-growth investment opportunities in nascent industries
  • Discover effective ways to manage innovative processes
  • Acquire a framework to negotiate, price, and structure the best investor terms
  • Learn how to best navigate the shareholder’s agreement to avoid costly mistakes
  • Identify how and when to exit the investment

Course Start Date:

  • May 6 – 10, 2019
  • December 8 – 12, 2019

Putting corporate finance at the heart of decision making is mission critical today, and not just in the C-suite. Senior-level executives in every industry face pressure to show the financial return and value of their initiatives, including the upside opportunity in and downside risk of every decision. Having a strong foundation in finance and an ability to speak that language is a must in today’s globally competitive market, because errors quickly become magnified and have greater implications for a company’s future.

Wharton Finance for Executives leverages what Wharton is world-renowned for: finance that strikes the right balance between academic rigor and practical application. Wharton faculty — led by finance professor and corporate finance expert Michael Roberts — apply their field-based research and professional experience to teach the latest strategic insights for making more informed and better decisions, and to provide participants with an improved ability to communicate those decisions to financial executives.

Faculty put the course curriculum in a context that is real, immediately applicable, and understandable. You will gain a thorough understanding of financial principles and the ability to apply them in practice. From practical tools to case application, you will apply financial tools and frameworks to real-world cases. You will leave the program with a new financial acumen that can inform every strategic decision you make and project you champion within your organization.

Ultimately, the program removes the shroud of mystery that people often have about corporate finance and empowers participants to use this understanding to improve their business, show their value to the organization, and further their professional development.

Course Modules

  • Sources of Value and Free Cash Flow
  • Cost-Benefit and Discounted Cash Flow Analysis
  • Decision Criteria: Net Present Value, Internal Rate of Return, and Payback Period
  • Risk, the Cost of Capital, and the Hurdle Rate
  • Growth through Strategic Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Risk Assessment and Sensitivity Analysis in Decision Making
  • Returns vs. Value
  • Staged Decision Making with Decision Trees
  • A keen understanding of how business decisions affect value and are reflected in financial metrics and accounting statements
  • Increased confidence to engage with financial executives
  • Insight into applying business valuation techniques to assess the value of investment projects, corporate assets, and whole companies for potential acquisition
  • The ability to better use financial information in managerial decision making
  • Rich opportunities to network with peers and engage in debates on current financial problems with some of the nation’s top finance faculty

Participants will learn how to:

  • Master integral financial analysis and evaluation tools and apply them to your business
  • Determine which operating decisions will drive the greatest value
  • Anticipate how decisions affect financial performance and create value
  • Become a more effective and persuasive communicator when dealing with corporate finance decision makers within your organization

Course Start Date:

  • September 23 – 27, 2019

Faculty

  • Itay Goldstein, PhD

    Joel S. Ehrenkranz Family Professor; Professor of Finance; Coordinator of PhD Program, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Corporate finance, financial fragility and crises, financial markets

  • Robert Holthausen, PhD

    The Nomura Securities Co. Professor; Professor of Accounting; Professor of Finance, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Effects of organizational structure on financial performance, management compensation issues, valuation

     

  • Jeffrey Jaffe, PhD

    Associate Professor of Finance, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Corporate finance, investments, money management, and the effects of information on the behavior of security prices

  • Mauro Guillén, PhD

    Dr. Felix Zandman Professor of International Management; Professor of Management; Director, The Lauder Institute

    Research Interests: Globalization, international political economy, multinational management

  • Michael Roberts, PhD

    William H. Lawrence Professor; Professor of Finance, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Applied econometrics, corporate investment, capital structure

  • Bilge Yilmaz, PhD

    Wharton Private Equity Professor; Professor of Finance; Director, Wharton Alternative Investments Initiative, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Corporate finance, alternative investments, game theory, political economy

Course Duration

2 Years (Flexible)

Application Start Date

Rolling Intake

Wharton Advanced Finance Program