MBA News: How Many of the Top CEOs Hold MBAs?

The Harvard Business Review (HBR) has published a list of “The 100 Best-Performing CEOs in the World” this year. Of those profiled, 27 hold MBA degrees, including such high-profile executives as Margaret Whitman (Harvard Business School), former CEO of eBay; John Chambers (Indiana Kelley), CEO of Cisco Systems; and Hugh Grant (International Management Centre), CEO of Monsanto. In all, these top 100 exemplary business leaders boasted an average shareholder return of 1,385% and increased their firms’ market value by $40.2B. Although the top four CEOs, including Steve Jobs and Amazon executive Jeffrey Bezos, were not among those with MBAs, the report shows what may be a promising trend for business school graduates. Despite contentions in the wake of the financial crisis that MBAs are value destroyers, the HBR published data in 2010 showing that MBAs on average ranked 40 places higher than non-MBAs, pointing to similar results in this year’s list. The report also mentions that being of a specific nationality did not seem to affect whether CEOs benefited from an MBA.

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