Content of the study:
The business school market - France

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1.1 Definition and general presentation of the market

A business school is an institution of higher education with a specialization in management and commerce The DEPP (Direction de l'évaluation de la prospective et de la performance) and the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, classify business schools as follows three groups:  

  • Group I (76% of students) schools are state-approved and offer a minimum of 1 diploma sought (may be issued by the State) by the Ministry of Higher Education ;
  • Group II: Schools state-approved but which do not deliver no diploma aimed at ;
  • Group III: Schools not recognized by the State.  

A distinction is also made between Grandes Ecoles (about 30 establishments) and the others. Finally, the schools are distinguished according to their status type (public, private or consular) and the training type which they deliver: Bachelor's, Master's, Mastère, MBA, Double Diploma, etc.

The types of training are themselves divided into two categories pre-service training (the student follows his first course of study there since the baccalaureate), and continuing education (the student already has work experience, and returns to school to train again: to develop his or her career).

The global market for business schools is in strong growth, particularly in Asia, where the number of students is growing exponentially and the reputation of its programs is increasingly recognized. Supply keeps pace with the demand from the growing number of students seeking internationally recognized training and diplomas. In this respect, France is a bridgehead with more than 10 schools in the top 50 worldwide for Masters in management

In France, the market is also rising sharply, with a 6.3% increase in student numbers in 2019/2020. The number of schools is increasing by more than 100 establishments in 5 years

The market is coming out of a privatization wave and thus sees increased competition. Schools are raising more and more funds for diversify their offer and defend their prestige . Financial resources are the key to the new competitive world of business schools, which compete in ingenuity to attract the best students and teachers

The French market is therefore highly concentrated and highly competitive, but this competition is established on different scales. The Grandes Ecoles are positioned on prestige and international influence, while more confidential schools target specific segments of teaching and practical skills

Economically, for the most prestigious (HEC, ESSEC, ESCP, EM LYON, EDHEC...) of the grandes écoles, continuing education is a real godsend, because with equivalent training, professionals are willing to pay the price for graduating from a first-rate institution. Moreover, it is often the companies that pay.

The trend is towards autonomy and ambition. Schools need the means to develop, and cannot indefinitely raise school fees. The classic model is being challenged and the supply is moving towards the soft skills  and outreach abroad

1.2 The global business school market and students around the world

Size of the business school market

The GMAC (***) lists nearly *,*** management degree programs around the world. The United States is one of the main markets with more than *,*** MBAs.

In a **** article, the Financial Times reports that the totality of management degree programmes represents a market of US$ * billion and has ...

1.3 The growing French market

The **** edition of the annual publication of the DEPP (***) Statistical benchmarks and references reports the figures of the French education and research system

The DEPP also reports on the evolution of enrolments (***) and in relation to the evolution of the number of schools

Change in enrolment in business, management and sales ...


2.1 French and foreign students and scholarship holders in business schools

Les écoles de commerce : la filière dynamique de l'enseignement supérieur

Le rapport de la DEPP présente la part des étudiants en école de commerce, dans l'ensemble du paysage des études supérieures en France. 

Répartition des effectifs étudiants de l'enseignement supérieur par étude France, ****, en % Source: ...

2.2 Student profiles: path taken and degree sought

In its information note **.**, published in July, the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation publishes some data on the profile of business school students.

The data refer only to students in Group I schools (***), they are still relevant for approaching the average student.-

Level of education at entry to ...

2.3 Student profiles: gender, and CSP of the referring parent

The DEPP report testifies to the fact that there is a very balanced gender distribution in business school. All *** schools in **** have a **.* per cent share of female students. This share rises to **.* per cent in Group II.

Breakdown of students enrolled in Group * business schools according to the CSP of ...


3.1 The French business school landscape

The DEPP classifies business schools into three groups

Group I : the schools are recognized by the State and offer at least * diploma approved by the Ministry of Higher Education ; Group II schools recognised by the State but which do not award any recognised diploma; Group III schools not recognized by the ...

3.2 Legal status of business schools and privatization of the sector

An article by Business Cool produces a typology of business school statutes. Thus, three types of status are possible:

Public (***) status

There are actually very few in France. Among them, we can cite the EM Strasbourg. This status is less and less represented because the State finances schools less and less, ...

3.3 The business school budget

Since the beginning of the ****s, business schools have undergone a major transformation: towards internationalization. The stated goal of the Grandes Ecoles is now clear: to make their diploma and their network shine on a global scale. The creation of accreditations (***) has enabled the schools to make themselves known

However, funding ...


4.1 Types of schools and diplomas

The two types of schools in the French landscape

L he Grandes Ecoles ;

These institutions of higher education are known to be selective and recruit their students through competitive examinations (***). They deliver a Master's degree in * years for the selected students but can also deliver bachelors and thus select students as ...

4.2 Price growth due to international competition and the end of subsidies

La fin des subvention et la nécessité de rester compétitif face à la concurrence internationale qui elle ne se prive pas sur les frais de scolarité, a entraîné depuis quelques années une hausse de ces derniers en France. 

D'après un article de l'Étudiant, en **** le coût ...

4.3 The internal offer the elements of differentiation

In a climate of privatization, the diversification of in-house supply is crucial for business schools. While schools may find it difficult to differentiate themselves on core courses, they have room and potential to diversify in other areas. Business schools compete at all levels to differentiate themselves:

Establishment of new campuses (***); Construction ...


5.1 Regulatory framework

Associations - law ****

The law of July *, **** and the decree of ** August **** are the two fundamental texts on which the functioning of the associations is based. The website summarises their obligations. Article one is reported below:

Article *: Association is the agreement by which two or more persons pool, on ...

5.2 Labels and accreditations

To stand out on the international scene, schools can apply for accreditation. These labels can be combined and the schools aim for triple accreditation. A school with triple accreditation is a school certified by AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA.

Worldwide ** schools have triple accreditation, including ** in France. [***]

AACSB (***) ;

It's an American label ...


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Reviews (5)

Reviews (5)

The market for the organisation of sporting events - France

Publicado en 22/09/2022 by Laure Lehaut - Le Haut Potentiel

Très clair et didactique. Bien documenté tout en restant synthétique. Beau travail!

Businesscoot Response:

Merci beaucoup Laure pour votre avis qui nous est précieux. Nous sommes ravis d'avoir été à la hauteur de vos attentes!

The e-learning and MOOCs market - France

Publicado en 18/08/2022 by VT KTEK

A very complete study where all sources are cited

The driving school market - France

Publicado en 17/08/2022 by Marie-Anne BOURDIAUX - ECOLE DE CONDUITE ACCELEREE

Study carried out by professionals which allowed me to deepen my knowledge of the market. Too bad that it was already 2 years old, the market being in constant evolution, I would have liked updated figures

The market for the organisation of sporting events - France

Publicado en 29/07/2022 by Rémi GEORGEL - SAS SPORT BUSINESS STRATEGY

Precise data and figures but lack of coherence and linkage in the course of the study

The dance school market - France

Publicado en 06/01/2022 by Malcolm Vincent

Many interesting figures on this little studied, poorly known and rapidly developing activity

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