MIT Sloan | Mr. AI & Robotics
GMAT 750, GPA 3.7
Tuck | Mr. Liberal Arts Military
GMAT 680, GPA 2.9
Stanford GSB | Mr. Social Entrepreneur
GRE 328, GPA 3.0
Wharton | Mr. Industry Switch
GMAT 760, GPA 3.95
Stanford GSB | Mr. Irish Consultant
GMAT 710, GPA 3.7
McCombs School of Business | Mr. Marine Executive Officer
GRE 322, GPA 3.28
Harvard | Ms. Developing Markets
GMAT 780, GPA 3.63
Harvard | Mr. Policy Player
GMAT 750, GPA 3.4
Wharton | Mr. Future Non-Profit
GMAT 720, GPA 8/10
Duke Fuqua | Mr. Tough Guy
GMAT 680, GPA 3.3
Harvard | Mr. CPPIB Strategy
GRE 329 (Q169 V160), GPA 3.6
Harvard | Mr. Defense Engineer
GMAT 730, GPA 3.6
Chicago Booth | Mr. Unilever To MBB
GRE 308, GPA 3.8
Chicago Booth | Mr. Bank AVP
GRE 322, GPA 3.22
Kellogg | Mr. Double Whammy
GMAT 730, GPA 7.1/10
Stanford GSB | Mr. Infantry Officer
GRE 320, GPA 3.7
McCombs School of Business | Mr. Ernst & Young
GMAT 600 (hopeful estimate), GPA 3.86
Kellogg | Mr. Engineer Volunteer
GMAT 710, GPA 3.8
Kellogg | Mr. Operations Analyst
GMAT Waived, GPA 3.3
Kellogg | Mr. Defense Engineer
GMAT 760, GPA 3.15
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Indian Dreamer
GRE 331, GPA 8.5/10
Kellogg | Mr. Innovator
GRE 300, GPA 3.75
London Business School | Ms. Private Equity Angel
GMAT 660, GPA 3.4
Chicago Booth | Ms. Indian Banker
GMAT 740, GPA 9.18/10
Yale | Ms. Biotech
GMAT 740, GPA 3.29
Stanford GSB | Ms. Global Empowerment
GMAT 740, GPA 3.66
Harvard | Mr. Renewables Athlete
GMAT 710 (1st take), GPA 3.63

The B-School Club For Billionaire MBAs

billionaire-money-management

 

A Learjet on standby for treks to St. Barts. A heated marble driveway for their Lamborghini Veneo Roadster. An Olympic-sized swimming pool surrounded by waterfall grottos. 24-karat gold-leafed walls peppered with Picassos, Monets, and Cézannes.

Admit it: You’ve probably dreamed of living like business titans, with their labyrinth gardens and two-story wine cellars. Ah, ‘champagne wishes and caviar dreams.’ And who would turn down the opulence, glamour, and renown of being a billionaire? Just imagine your face dotting the cover of Fortune or walking passed buildings bearing your name? Still, the bliss inherent to wealth is rooted in something deeper than ritz, ego, and security. It’s about knowing that you’ve left a legacy…and your sacrifices were worth it.

Make no mistake: MBAs are looking to make it big. They may not aspire to be a Carlos Slim or Abigail Johnson, but they’re ultimately seeking certain comforts. That’s why they forfeit steady paychecks for two years; They’re polishing their skills and building their networks for a future payout. If future MBAs are looking to hit the jackpot and join the billionaires club someday, there is one program that stands above all others: Harvard Business School.

HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL WINS BY A MILE

Harvard Business School at night

Harvard Business School at night

That was the finding from a Wealth-X report released Tuesday (November 11). According to their research, Harvard Business School has graduated 64 living billionaires, nearly three times the number as the Stanford Graduate School of Business (23). You can almost hear Robin Leach doing a voiceover for HBS’ next promotional video.

Surprisingly, Columbia Business School beat out Wharton for billionaire MBAs by a 14-to-12 margin to rank third. The University of Chicago’s Booth’s School of Business rounded out the top five with 10 billionaires.

The data was collected by Wealth-X, considered the leading source for information on the ultra high net worth (UHNW) market. Overall, the United States produced seven of the top ten MBA programs for billionaire alumni, with New York University’s Stern School of Business (7) and the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business (5) also cracking the top 10. France’s INSEAD headed the list for international programs with nine billionaire alumni. Switzerland’s IMD (5) and the London Business School (5) also made the Wealth-X and UBS list.

AN MBA HELPS IN BECOMING A BILLIONAIRE

Overall, 65% of billionaires possessed a university degree according to Wealth-X. Broken down further, 42% held a bachelor’s degree, with 26% moving on for a master’s degree.  However, 21% also earned an MBA. More striking, nearly 50% of these MBA holders had earned their degree from one the top 10 programs cited earlier. 11% of billionaires also carried Ph.D.s.

David Friedman

David Friedman

According to David Friedman, President of Wealth-X, the right MBA program offers unique benefits to aspiring billionaires. For example, in social media, “It provides a context for deciding whether to develop a new relationship [with you],” Friedman tells Poets&Quants. “So much of success has to do with your relationships and your network. MBA programs tend to be a place where people forge really strong relationships…and propel their professional career. [After graduation], it gives [MBAs] the ability to call someone to quickly get access to a decision-maker, which can make the difference in actually getting something done.”

The degree itself also opens doors and confers credibility. In the workplace, Friedman notes, an MBA can help ambitious professionals better position themselves – or their ideas. “The overly apparent assumption is that [with an MBA] you have more skills, a better understanding, and a different perspective. Therefore, that would lead to more success from a business perspective and therefore a higher percentage of billionaires. I don’t think that’s accurate, but if you look at the surface that seems to be what the data is saying.”

MBAs KEY TO GROWTH

Friedman also believes an MBA, if leveraged correctly, can give graduates an edge in becoming a billionaire. “Say you graduate…[and] go to work for an investment bank where you spend two years as analyst focusing on a specific vertical or industry. As part of those two years, you get to know every player and business model. With that knowledge, you can join or start a company in that sector and understand how to build [in that market].”