Gulf talent inspired by historic lessons on big ambition

100 Executive MBA-Dubai graduates set to follow visionary leader’s example


Students graduating at London Business School’s annual Recognition ceremony in Dubai have heard how the Gulf's future business leaders can learn from Dubai’s impressive history and growth.

“Dubai has come a long way since it was a small trading hub in the 1950s,” said keynote speaker Brendan Noonan, Senior Vice President, Learning and Development at Emirates Group and board member of London Business School’s Global Business Consortium. “The emirate grew phenomenally under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai from 1958 - 1990.

“Sheikh Rashid’s visionary leadership, big ambitions and perseverance carry valuable lessons. His dedication and commitment remind us how important it is to think big, stretch to the limit of your abilities and never give up.”

Recognising the strategic importance of Dubai as a global business centre, London Business School launched its first centre outside of London at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) seven years ago to help develop the region’s future business leaders.  

“London Business School is flourishing in London and in Dubai and our links with the Middle East are growing every day,” said Professor Sir Andrew Likierman, Dean of London Business School, who was in Dubai to address the School’s Executive MBA-Dubai graduates. “The relationship is important not only because both places are leading financial centres, but because it is clear that Dubai, and indeed the wider Gulf region, has a vital role to play in the future of world business.” 

“Dubai as a city personifies many London Business School attributes – it is young, growing, and cosmopolitan, and most importantly, the best is yet to come,” noted Andrew Scott, Deputy Dean and Professor of Economics, who was also speaking at the event.

This summer 100 students, including 18 GCC nationals, have graduated from London Business School’s Executive MBA programme, taught at the School’s Dubai Centre. Nearly half of this year’s graduates live outside the UAE, commuting to the School’s base at the DIFC from Doha, Jeddah, Muscat, and other global cities.

Congratulating the graduates, Sir Andrew Likierman said: “Bright futures lie ahead of you. What we set out to do is equip you better to cope with change and we are confident that your skills and insights will be the drivers of corporate and regional economic growth.”

Students enrolled in the School’s Executive MBA-Dubai programme take modules every three to four weeks at the DIFC, before going on to take electives in both Dubai and London in their second year. In the second year of study students complete an international assignment before finishing the course with two modules alongside their London-based colleagues.

The School continues to be one of the leading business schools in the region and across the globe. It is ranked in the top five business schools in every international ranking. The next intake for Executive MBA students will be in September 2014.