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MasterCard-ESSEC Luxury Brand Management Executive Scholarship Program to be offered in Singapore and Hong Kong

Travel News Asia Latest Travel News Friday, 15 February 2008

MasterCard Worldwide in collaboration with the ESSEC Business School is offering the MasterCard-ESSEC Luxury Brand Management Executive Program for the second year running. The program is designed to equip professionals in the luxury retail and services industry with an understanding of current branding, management and consumer trends.

The MasterCard-ESSEC Luxury Brand Management Executive Program comprises scholarships for a four-day intensive course run by the prestigious ESSEC Business School. The renowned French institution runs one of the worlds only luxury brand management MBA programs, which has become a reference point for the global luxury industry. This unique curriculum had previously only been taught at ESSECs campus in France. Through the MasterCard-ESSEC Luxury Brand Management Executive Program, selected modules have been made available to students in Asia Pacific. This year a total of 30 scholarships are being offered.

This program layers ESSECs well-established luxury brand management curriculum in France, with a fresh Asian perspective on luxury industry trends. The professors teaching the courses are well-respected academics in their field, and have worked closely with leading global luxury brands in developing their business strategies through their research. Scholarship recipients from 2007 have told us that the program gave them invaluable new perspectives on the luxury segment, said Christian Koenig, Director of the Singapore campus of ESSEC.

The collaboration draws on research by MasterCard which attests to the rapid expansion of the affluent consumer market in the region. It shows that the size and the spending power of the affluent consumers of Asia are expected to expand rapidly over the next decade. Discretionary spending of the affluent households in 12 key Asian markets, over 70 million households strong in 2015, will exceed $600 billion.

The Chinese luxury market will be a special focus of the MasterCard-ESSEC Luxury Brand Management Executive Program, with a whole day dedicated to the study of its enormous growth potential. This will incorporate an analysis of the luxury consumer market, the geographic distribution of Chinas affluent consumers and the different regional characteristics.

Chinas rich households, defined as those earning an annual income of $50 000 and above, were estimated to number around 48 000, with a collective income of almost $3 billion in 2005. Assuming a trend rate of real GDP growth of 7.5% per year over the next 10 years, it is expected there will be over 400 000 such households in 2015, averaging an astonishing annual growth rate of 23.8%. Their collective income will also grow by about 10 times, exceeding $29 billion by 2015. Research shows the rich in China are spending on everything from cars, to dining and international travel.

A market such as China, where the affluent consumer segment is growing rapidly, is of special interest to the luxury industry. Chinese consumers are reshaping the market with their enormous purchasing power and aspirational lifestyles, and this scholarship program with its focus on China, will give industry professionals the insight they need to drive their businesses in this market, said Georgette Tan, vice president, Communications, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, MasterCard Worldwide.

The programs focus on Asia stuck a cord with recipients of last years scholarship, including Patsy Chan, Chief Operating Officer, Richemont Asia Pacific, Taiwan.

There were a lot of real case studies that helped us understand the market, the competitors, and to apply the theory and practices learnt during these four days. The atmosphere was very relaxed and created good interaction amongst all classmates in the sharing of experiences and innovative ideas, said Chan.

This years scholarship recipients will be able to choose to attend the program in either Singapore or Hong Kong. The first session will be held in Singapore from April 11 to 14 and the second in Hong Kong, from August 22 to 25, giving participants with busy schedules more flexibility.

Scholarship recipients will receive an intensive and hands-on learning experience over four days of lectures and training. The course will cover the key challenges and dynamics of the luxury industry, different models of luxury brand development and unique challenges in managing services for competitive advantage.

Admission to the MasterCard-ESSEC Luxury Brand Management Program is based on a rigorous selection process. Professionals currently employed in the luxury industry in Asia Pacific are invited to apply. All applications will be reviewed by a MasterCard-ESSEC academic panel, which will determine a select group of 30 scholars. Course graduates will be awarded internationally-recognized certificates by ESSEC Business School. The program will be conducted in English in Singapore and Hong Kong. The deadline for application for the first session in April is March 7 and that for the second session in August is June 30.

See other recent news regarding: Travel News Asia, Scholarship, Singapore, Hong Kong, Brand Management, MasterCard

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