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COMMERCIAL AND RETAIL MANAGEMENT

About the programme
Language: English (See language requirements)   | Place of study: Aarhus  | Commencement: August / September (no winter intake)

Introduction

The MSc in Commercial and Retail Management is based on the growing challenges faced by the consumer goods industry. It has been developed in close collaboration with prominent actors in the industry.

The degree programme prepares the student for a career in the HQ functions of the consumer goods industry and it provides an understanding of the industry’s specific challenges, which paves the way for a faster climb up the career ladder.

The students will acquire qualifications in areas such as retail strategy and innovation, consumer behaviour, business negotiations, pricing, performance management as well as range, category and brand management. 

Deep understanding of the value chain

Today, traditional retail trade is supplemented with e-commerce and various hybrids, and more and more communication takes place on social media. Companies must therefore be able to handle an omni-channel situation where a number of different sales and communication channels must be optimised in relation to each other. In addition, the ability to handle big data is becoming increasingly important in the consumer goods industry. This has led to changes in the relationship between supplier and retailer. The supplier must increasingly consider the entire value chain right through to the consumer, while the retailer must structure its supplier relations with an eye for how to create value for the consumer.

The traditional division of the B2B and B2C markets is thus developing towards a much-needed B2B2C mindset. The degree programme reflects this B2B2C mindset since the courses Supplier-retailer relations management, Business negotiations and Consumer behaviour in a retail setting cover the entire value chain from supplier to consumer. Furthermore, the students will acquire competences within areas that have a particular focus on the consumer goods industry such as retail strategy and innovation, pricing, performance and margin management, stock and waste management as well as range, category, and brand management. Digital transformation and the use of big data will play a prominent role in the programme and will recur in many courses.

Collaboration with prominent actors in the industry 

The degree programme has been developed in collaboration with prominent actors in the consumer goods industry. These are gathered in a founding partners group consisting of Arla, Bestseller, Danish Crown, KFI, Dagrofa, Jysk, Rema 1000 and Salling Group. The companies will play an important role in the degree programme and its courses through guest lectures, internships and Master's theses collaborations. They will also be offering a number of relevant student jobs. Internships at the above-mentioned companies are an important part of the programme. Students are encouraged to complete an internship, and the participating companies guarantee a significant number of internship positions.

Career

The degree programme prepares the students for a career in various HQ functions in the consumer goods industry. Based on the value chain approach, the students will be able to undertake many functions in either the supply or retail link of the value chain, especially within the consumer goods industry; from category manager or procurement manager to key account manager.    

Programme structure

Academic regulations

Preliminary programme structure:

                    

(Subject to change)


The degree programme consists of two semesters in the first year which cover the compulsory courses in the programme specialisation and two semesters in the last year which are reserved for the student's own specialisation.

In the first semester you follow the prerequisite courses that form the methodological and academic basis for the further study programme. The course “Introduction to Value Chain Management” will be completed with an exam in week 43.

In the second semester you follow the specialisation courses of the programme. The semester consists of two blocks of three courses. The first three courses will be ending with an exam before the Easter holidays.

In the third semester, you can choose elective courses within your areas of interest. The courses can be taken either at Aarhus BSS during the semester, at the AU Summer University or at one of our more than 300 partner universities abroad. You can also participate in internship programmes either in Denmark or abroad.

The fourth semester is devoted to the Master's thesis. You may freely choose the topic of the thesis and thereby get a chance to concentrate on and specialise in a specific field of interest. The thesis may be written in collaboration with another student or it may be the result of your individual effort. When the thesis has been submitted, it is defended before the academic advisor as well as an external examiner.

Admission Requirements

Students that hold a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics and Business Administration (HA) or variants hereof from Aarhus University can pursue direct admission to the MSc programmes in Economics and Business Administration after they complete their Bachelor’s degree programme.

If you hold a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Business Administration, Bsc (HA) from one of the Danish universities, you fulfill the specific admission requirement for the Master’s degree programmes in Economics and Business Administration (cand.merc.).

If you hold a Graduate Diploma in Business Administration (HD), you can also pursue admission to the MSc programmes in Economics and Business Administration. However, it is required that you complete supplementary courses corresponding to 20 ECTS. For information on which supplementary courses you should take please check the overview of supplementary courses for HD (available only in Danish).   

Students that hold a degree from another university

If you hold a degree from another university, your qualifications will be assessed once you have applied for admission. You can also have your qualifications pre-assessed by Aarhus University, Admission between 1 September and 31 October in order to find out if you meet the admission requirements. Please contact ma.admission@au.dk for further information about pre-assessments between 1 September and 31 October.  The assessment will prioritize the sufficient content of the following subjects and ECTS-points:    

Quantitative and Qualitative Methods

15 ECTS

Managerial Economics and Operations Management

15 ECTS

Marketing

7,5 ECTS

Finance and Accounting

15 ECTS

Organisation- and Leadership Theory

7,5 ECTS

Microeconomics

5 ECTS

Additional ECTS points within the abovementioned areas

15 ECTS

Total ECTS within Economics and Business Administration

80 ECTS

Language requirements

Since English is the language of instruction in all subjects, all applicants are required to provide evidence of their English language proficiency. 
Please see the page on language requirements.

Student life

 

Learning in an International Context

At Aarhus BSS, we conduct research at the highest academic level.

All researchers employed are engaged in research projects covering a wide range of different subjects and focusing on knowledge and skills considered essential for professional business activities in the global marketplace. All faculty have both research and teaching responsibilities which means that our teaching is continually based on the latest research results.

Aarhus BSS is very internationally oriented. The broad scope of our research activities and educational programmes enable us to attract researchers, teachers, and students from all over the world, and this creates an international environment for research and learning in which academic views are exchanged, experiences are gathered and friendships are formed.

Aarhus University is a leading university in Denmark in building student exchange opportunities. The university encourages all students to spend time studying abroad. Every year, more than 700 students from Aarhus BSS go abroad to participate in exchange programmes around the world at our more than 300 partner universities. About the same number of students from all over the world come to participate in the exchange programme in Aarhus, and this contributes to a truly international learning atmosphere.

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Career

The degree programme prepares the students for a career in various HQ functions in the consumer goods industry. The students’ understanding of the specific challenges of the industry paves the way for a faster climb up the career ladder. Based on the value chain approach, the students will be able to undertake many functions in either the supply or retail link of the supply chain, especially within the consumer goods industry; from category manager or procurement manager to key account manager.