Tag: global



Part of a series about summer internships from Olin MBA ’20 students. Today we hear from Ian Belkin, who worked with MUTE International in Shanghai.

I spent my summer interning at a startup in Shanghai named MUTE International. MUTE is an acronym for Multiple Urban Transport Evolution. The company provides green, energy efficient, electric scooters to consumers, eschewing ownership in favor of month-to-month usership.

The business model is similar to the WeWork or Cort models, but functions in the transportation space through an app that provides a streamlined and frictionless set-up, requiring no down payment or credit card.

My role as an intern has comprised creating cashflow and other financial projections of expected growth as well as constructing pitch decks to court potential investors in future rounds of funding.

One fear inevitably shared by participants in internships with such truncated timelines is that the challenges and responsibilities conferred upon them will be rote and lack significance. Fortunately, my personal experience at MUTE has been quite the opposite.

There exists a plethora of substantive, engaging and challenging assignments to be tackled. Since its inception, MUTE has been aggressively expanding into nascent markets and now boasts offices across three continents, in locations as diverse as London, Bali, Shanghai, Perth, and Lyon.

A large portion of my early efforts were spent investigating the financial viability of three additional proposed outlets in Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Ho Chi Minh City (to my great disappointment, I was not invited to participate in the on-the-ground due diligence in any of these exotic locales).

Accounting for the nuances associated with breaching new markets is an interdisciplinary exercise: marketing and scaling bleed into operations and logistics, all of which are framed and constrained by the vagaries and realities of financing.

This internship experience has provided ample opportunity to develop and meld the various core tenets of business espoused in the first year of our Olin MBA program.

Inevitably, start-ups succeed based on the unbridled passion and proclivity towards masochism of their founding members. MUTE is the brainchild of Patrick Davin, an intrepid and indefatigable Aussie with 25 years of experience in the electric scooter market and a successful IPO already to his credit.

Beyond the evolution of my technical skills, bearing consistent witness to Patrick’s inimitable enthusiasm and perseverance were the most valuable commodity I left with. Leadership, another often-touched upon trope within Olin is not only preached, but practiced on a daily basis at MUTE.

I feel fortunate to have earned the opportunity to learn directly from Patrick, and hope to impart my newly acquired wisdom upon my return to Olin and upon all future endeavors thereafter.




Part of a series about summer internships from Olin MBA ’20 students. Today we hear from Rebecca Matey who worked as a JD/MBA intern for Baker McKenzie Law Firm.

My internship was nothing short of amazing. As a JD/MBA, I was able to merge my business and legal interests working in the Chicago office of Baker & McKenzie, an international law firm. I primarily worked in the banking and finance practice group on projects and deals regarding private equity fund formation, mergers and acquisitions, refinancing, private placements and much more.

This summer confirmed my passion for banking and finance, and I will continue to pursue taking such classes during my final year at Olin.

To secure the internship, I knew I had to align my interests with the firm’s. I quickly learned Baker McKenzie was primarily a transactional firm that focused on helping its clients pursue global legal and business endeavors.  I also researched my interviewers and tried to find noteworthy aspects of their lives and work that intertwined with my passion and goals.

Lastly, I made sure to introduce myself to the head of the summer program and show off my personality. Although she wasn’t an attorney, I knew interns spent the most time with her and knew she had the ear of the hiring committee.

Prepped well with Olin coursework

As a result, showcasing my global identity, interest in international transactional work, and ability to understand legal and business issues helped me secure my dream internship.

Courses such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Power & Politics, and the numerous finance classes I took positioned me to understand concepts and issues in great detail. I could ask questions about the makeup of particular private equity funds and follow the numbers our business partners drafted for acquisitions.

Also, navigating the politics of which attorney to work for or go to lunch with was equally vital in extracting the most value from my experience.

I made sure to meet attorneys and partners who worked on projects that intrigued me and expressed interest in working with them even if it meant listening in on calls. Being proactive not only introduced me to substantive legal work, but also enabled me to get to know partners on a personal level.

Working at Baker & McKenzie exposed me to how corporations operate in a multitude of jurisdictions such as Thailand, Nigeria, Honduras and more. I have a greater understanding of how the business and legal worlds intersect, especially from an international perspective.

Baker McKenzie is the perfect firm to pursue my global development goals because of the immense exposure to industry leaders across the world. With more experience, I hope to position myself gain the necessary expertise to pursue larger projects within Africa.

With an established African practice, Baker McKenzie is poised to support me in these endeavors. I am ecstatic that my dream internship ended with an offer to pursue my dream job.




Olin students traveled to Madrid and Sarajevo to study entrepreneurship and serve as startup consultants in a new undergraduate summer program.

ACCENT’s July Newsletter features the 16 Olin students who studied the impact of startup businesses in cities undergoing economic transition.

While in Madrid, students examined the role of start-ups in the economy after Europe’s “Great Recession.” In Sarajevo, students analyzed the opportunities found in an emerging economy after war.

The students in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina on the day of their presentations

The program culminated in a group consulting project where student consultants shared opportunities for growth on a particular aspect of the startup company.

During the program, classwork was combined with rich opportunities to understand the historical, cultural, and economic environment of the European cities. Students visited museums and local companies, toured the cities, and participated in workshops from international lawyers and activists. 

Madrid and Sarajevo are considered ideal cities for start-ups with unique historical and economic environments, dedicated investors, and skilled young professionals.


John Stroup, President & CEO of Belden Inc., explains the major global trends driving investment in automation for manufacturing. Some factors contributing to automation’s increased adoption are rising labor costs, the need for increased productivity, and changing consumer behaviors.

Automation enables manufacturers to become better at producing to meet consumer demand because it significantly shortens changeover, resulting in greater flexibility. Stroup goes on to explain that, due to rising labor costs in Asia, many manufacturers are moving production to the United States and using automation to replace human labor. Productivity is more elusive than ever in the current post-recession landscape, which increases the need to focus on maximizing productivity and ROI.

All of these factors are generating a great deal of interest in the adoption of automation in manufacturing—a process Stroup says will be “evolutionary, not revolutionary.” Stroup estimates automation adoption will reach 74% in 6-10 years. The automotive industry is already at that mark.

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Automation, or the use of robots and other artificial intelligence to perform tasks, has increased dramatically over the past couple decades. And while a Skynet scenario in the near future is unlikely, we are undoubtedly on the brink of an automation revolution.

John Stroup, President & CEO of Belden Inc., recently paid a visit to The Boeing Center to discuss some of the economic drivers for a revolution in automation. He believes that the United States is well-positioned for increased automation in manufacturing due to recent technological advances. In fact, the majority of manufacturing jobs lost in the last 10-15 years are a result of increased automation, not offshoring (as is commonly thought).

One of the economic factors Stroup credits for the automation revolution is the rise in minimum wages. As labor costs increase, companies look for ways to decrease spending, often turning to machines to replace their human counterparts. But despite the downward trend in manufacturing jobs, there has been a massive uptick in productivity due to robotics and other technology. He predicts that by 2025, the global average of tasks performed by robots will be around 25%, more than double what it is today. Stroup then went on to describe his experience at a “lights-out factory,” or a factory that doesn’t turn on the lights because it utilizes only robots and artificial intelligence.

Stroup went on to mention that Europe is often ahead of the curve in terms of automation due to relatively expensive labor. Regardless of one’s opinions about automation, we are likely to see its increased adoption as global labor costs rise and the cost of implementing AI falls.

For more supply chain digital content and cutting-edge research, check us out on the socials [@theboeingcenter] and our website [olin.wustl.edu/bcsci]

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A Boeing Center digital production

The Boeing Center

Supply Chain  //  Operational Excellence  //  Risk Management

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