News from Cass Business School

Cass MBA students return from study tour to the UAE

Students met business leaders in Abu Dhabi and Dubai

Monday, 24 May, 2010

A group of Cass MBA students have recently returned from a study tour in the UAE where they had the opportunity to observe at first hand the unique characteristics of the Middle East business environment.

The five-day programme comprised of visits to leading companies, high-level presentations and discussions, and meetings with respected business leaders from a diversity of industries.

Visiting Abu Dhabi and Dubai from May 8 to 12, the delegation met with industry figures including Arup Mukkopadhyay, Executive Vice President and Head of Consumer Banking at Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank; Samir Asaad, Head of Private Equity at Invest AD; and Hala Badri, Executive Vice President of Brand and Communications at telecommunications service provider du. The students also had on-site presentations and discussions with representatives of major developers Emaar and Nakheel, the Masdar sustainable city project, and Dubai Sports City.

Commenting on the tour, Richard Gillingwater, Dean, said: The UAE is an important commercial and financial hub and has shown resilience in the face of today’s challenging economic environment. Abu Dhabi is forging ahead with the diversification of its economy backed by its leadership in the energy sector, while Dubai has consolidated its position as a gateway to the region for investors and as a hub for finance and trade.

He said: Looking at the wider region, the Middle East presents challenges and opportunities in equal measure, beset by political instability on the one hand but home to a young, rapidly growing and talented workforce on the other.

The Cass International Study Tour provides our MBA students direct access to decision makers at the centre of one of the world’s most significant emerging economies, and provides fresh perspectives on the dynamics of doing business in the Arab world.

This month’s study tour coincided with the graduation of the Cass Business School’s first group of Dubai-based Executive MBA students, celebrated at a special ceremony and reception at Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), where the Cass programme is based.  We were also honoured by the attendance at the graduation event of HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum and HE Ahmed Al Tayer.

Professor Roy Batchelor, Director of the Dubai EMBA programme, commented The development of Cass Business School in the region since its debut in 2007 has been very encouraging, and we have all been impressed by the quality and dedication of our first cohort of EMBA students. The meeting of London and Dubai students at the graduation ceremony made for a stimulating exchange of ideas, and really helped impress on the visitors the message that the view of the world from Dubai at the centre of the fast-developing MENA region - is very different from the view from London.

In addition to the celebrations in Dubai, Cass also hosted an alumni reception in Abu Dhabi on Sunday 9 May at the residence of the British Ambassador to the UAE, Dominic Jermey OBE.  Many of the School’s local alumni as well as alumni from recent Executive Education programmes offered in the region by Cass gathered to network and reconnect with fellow alumni and friends.

Theresa Dzendrowskyj, Head of Alumni Relations at Cass, said: It was wonderful to meet so many of our influential alumni in Abu Dhabi. Cass’s reputation in the region is certainly flourishing and our Alumni are at the heart of our success.

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Graduating Cass Dubai EMBA students celebrateHE Mr Ahmed Humaid Al Tayer, pictured with Richard Gillingwater, Dean of Cass; Professor Roy Batchelor, Director of the Dubai EMBA programme; Ehsan Razavizadeh, Head of the Cass Dubai Representative office and the graduating Cass students.
L-R: Ehsan Razavizadeh, Head of the Cass Dubai Representative Office, Dominic Jermey OBE, British Ambassador to the UAE and Richard Gillingwater, Dean of Cass Business School

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