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EDHEC launches MBA for family business next gens

By Michael Finnigan

A top European business school has announced a new MBA programme aimed at improving the core skills of future family business leaders.

The Edhec Business School in France will launch its first family business global executive MBA in February 2015, having seen an unfilled niche for such programmes on the continent.

According to Olivier Oger, dean of the Edhec Business School, the MBA has been tailor-made for next-gen leaders with the goal of improving essential management skills needed for senior positions.

Despite a small number of schools providing family business programmes, Edhec believes the number of family businesses in the European private sector – a reported 65 per cent – will translate into healthy admission figures when the MBA course opens next year.

“Edhec has long recognised the important role of family businesses in the global economy,” said Oger. “We believe that by launching this one-of-a-kind MBA we can provide additional support to these firms and the families.”

Students will participate in a 15-month course overseen by “renowned academic experts and business innovators” that will provide regular coaching sessions and media training. The course requires six weeks of classroom-based study at the Edhec campus in France, and a further three weeks in London and Singapore.

Students will also have the opportunity to gain practical experience during a series of placements with partnered businesses in Singapore.

Perhaps the most unusual aspect of the course, however, is a three-day boot camp held at the UK’s Sandhurst military academy, where students will test their leadership skills under challenging circumstances.

They will also be asked to buddy up with students in similar family businesses and shadow them as they go about their duties. The aim is to identify their own skills and consider what is common throughout all family businesses.

Many in the business world consider Edhec to be a leader in financial research, and the French campus often ranks among the top three schools in the country. Their campuses in London and Singapore are similarly competitive and have seen a great deal of growth over the last five years.

Edhec Family Business Centre was opened in 2012 by a number of wealthy families and renowned family businesses, including the Bic Group. The new course will cost €60,000 and applications are currently being accepted.  

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