42% Of CEOs At Top Fortune 100 Firms Have MBA Degrees...

Business school may be your ticket to the boardroom. More than 40% of the chief executive officers in the top 100 Fortune companies have studied for an MBA, according to research from Heidrick & Struggles, the executive search firm. In the UK, 27% of the top chief executives opted for an MBA degree; 24% in France. The data show that studying at an elite business school could be your best bet for becoming a CEO. Around 50% of the chief executives of SBF 120 companies, the index of France’s 120 largest firms, graduated from one of four top schools: INSEAD, HEC Paris, École nationale d’administration or École Polytechnique. INSEAD, which has campuses in France, Singapore and Abu Dhabi, has several prominent CEOs. These include Tidjane Thiam at Swiss investment bank Credit Suisse; Helge Lund of oil major BG Group; and António Horta-Osório of UK lender Lloyds Banking Group. HEC Paris’ star alumni include Jean-Paul Agon, CEO of cosmetics group L’Oréal; François-Henri Pinault, the chief executive of luxury brand Kering; and Bruno Lafont, industrial champion Lafarge’s chief. In the US, 28% of the Fortune 100 chiefs graduated from seven top universities: Harvard, Stanford, Pennsylvania, Berkeley, Columbia, MIT, and Princeton. Harvard Business School has seven CEOs at top European companies alone. These include Vittorio Colao at telecoms group Vodafone, and Sir Martin Sorrell of WPP, the world’s largest advertising group. Columbia’s CEO alumni are James Gorman, at US bank Morgan Stanley, and César Alierta, at telecoms group Telefónica, among others. Stanford counts Carlos Brito, CEO of brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev, as alumni. Berkeley graduated Joseph Jimenez, the chief of pharma group Novartis, and Shantanu Narayen, head at software company Adobe. Meanwhile, 24% of the UK’s FTSE 100 CEOs graduated from either Oxford...