Scholarship boost for London Business School

Six-figure gifts from Middle East will support new scholarships and research


Members of London Business School’s alumni community and regional business leaders in the Middle East have pledged a total of 3.4m AED (£600K) to strengthen the School’s global scholarship offering, as well as the growth of its research and business education programmes.

Four six-figure gifts from the region, donated as part of the School’s first ever fundraising campaign to raise £100m, will boost the School’s growth. They will be largely dedicated to the introduction of new scholarships and support for the School’s research programme.

Donors include United Arab Emirates (UAE) national Muna Al Gurg, Dubai-based husband and wife Navin and Monica Valrani, Al-Dabbagh Group, whose CEO Amr Al-Dabbagh is a governor of the School, and Kuwaiti businessman Ahmad Alhomaizi.

Meredith Pierce Hunter, Director of Development and Alumni Relations, London Business School, said: “We are very grateful to our Middle Eastern donors for their generosity and unwavering commitment to the School. The Campaign is essential for our ambition to grow. These donations will provide opportunities for the next generation of business leaders to make a significant impact.

“We are proud the donations have come from this dynamic and exciting region to which we have been committed for almost a decade through our Dubai Centre, Executive MBA and Executive Education programmes.” 

Muna Easa Al Gurg (Executive MBA 2009) is Director of Retail at the Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group and Chairwoman of the Young Arab Leaders UAE. Her donation will see the introduction of the Muna Al Gurg Scholarship, which will support students studying on the School’s MBA and Executive MBA programmes.

“An MBA from London Business School gave me the opportunity to grow personally and professionally,” says Muna Easa Al Gurg. “It empowered me to succeed in the next chapter of my career. I hope this scholarship offers a similar opportunity to other business leaders as they strive to reach their full potential.”

Navin Valrani (Executive MBA 2013), CEO at the Engineering Services Cluster of the Al Shirawi Group, and his wife Monica Valrani, CEO of Ladybird nurseries in Dubai, made their donation earlier this year. Mr and Mrs Valrani’s donation will support Indian women of exceptional merit, whose intent is to return to India to use the skills acquired at London Business School.

"For too long far too many women from the Indian subcontinent have not been given the opportunity to pursue the kind of education I had at LBS”, says Navin Valrani. “The Monica and Navin Valrani Scholarship fund at LBS intends to give such opportunities to female students from India."

Kuwaiti Ahmad Alhomaizi (Executive MBA 2010), Director of Veritas Capital Limited, has made an unrestricted gift to support the School’s growth over the next five years.

A fourth donation from the Jeddah-based Al-Dabbagh Group, whose CEO Amr Al-Dabbagh is a governor of the School, will support research at the School’s Deloitte Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (DIIE). The gift will fund action-based, micro-entrepreneurship research in developing countries. The research will look at the economic and social impact micro-entrepreneurs can have on the lives of individuals, households and communities, living with poverty.

The School’s first comprehensive fundraising campaign was launched in September 2013 to raise £100m. More than £90m has been raised to date and London Business School’s worldwide alumni have given nearly 68,000 volunteering hours. The Campaign is to fund the development of Old Marylebone Town Hall in London, attract world class faculty, double the School’s scholarships offering, invest in the latest technology, and develop an unrestricted fund in support of the School’s strategic priorities.

Ranked second in the Financial Times Global MBA Ranking 2015, London Business School runs seven degree programmes, including a full-time MBA, Masters in Finance, Masters in Management, Executive MBAs (EMBA) in London and Dubai and EMBA-Global degrees with Columbia Business School and Hong Kong University.

London Business School has had a strong presence for nine years in the Middle East, where it has its regional base at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). The School’s Dubai Centre runs an Executive MBA (EMBA), a two-year programme which provides students with the opportunity to work and study simultaneously, allowing them to apply their newly acquired business knowledge immediately in the workplace. The School also offers a range of executive education programmes in the region.