LSBF group rescues German school

September 10, 2013

Global University Systems (GUS), an international higher education group including the London School of Business and Finance (LSBF), has acquired Gisma Business School, rescuing the Hannover-based institution from insolvency.

Photo: Graduating students outside the Gisma campus

According to a statement issued by GUS, the partnership will allow Gisma to further develop its academic profile, strengthen its management team and expand its course portfolio, while also better supporting students’ needs and bringing greater opportunities through GUS’s network of academic partners, agents, international locations, marketing and online learning structures.

Launched in 1999 as an initiative by then Prime Minister Gerhard Schröder in conjunction with the state of Lower Saxony, Gisma offers MBA programmes for both local and international students.

Ann-Kathrin Fortmann, Senior Executive Director at Gisma, also welcomed the new development: “This is a very positive time for Gisma and we are excited to be fully integrated with GUS.  To date Gisma has been widely regarded for the quality of its MBA courses and this integration will allow us to open our doors to a much wider global market. We are fully committed to working with the Leibniz Universität Hannover as well as the government and business communities of Lower-Saxony.”

Leading the academic development at GUS, Professor Dr Maurits van Rooijen, CEO for the group Academic Division, said, “We are extremely proud to welcome to the GUS umbrella a unique institution such as Gisma, which has been at the forefront of business education in Germany for the last 14 years. By working with Gisma, we are one step closer to achieving our vision to create a global education network covering the world’s major cities, online education and bringing international opportunities to institutions at any location.

“The GUS development team will be working closely with colleagues in Hannover to provide Gisma with all the necessary tools to expand reach, strengthen its appeal to both local and international students and drive growth. Current and former Gisma students will also be able to tap into the wider GUS Alumni network and all the opportunities a global resource of its size can offer.”

The acquisition was welcomed by local authorities and politicians. Walter Hirche, former Minister of Lower Saxony and current President of the German Commission for Unesco, said, “My team in Hannover and I are personally very happy that Gisma now faces a successful time ahead. I am fully convinced that Gisma, the staff and all students will have a splendid future growth within the Global University Systems (GUS) umbrella framework. The dynamic new constellation will continuously improve the academic success story by winning more and more international access and recognition.”

The GUS group was originally founded in 2003, but reorganised in 2012. Its partner institutions include: LSBF; St Patrick’s College; Interactive; London College of Contemporary Arts; School of Fashion & Design London; FBT (Finance Business Training); The Language Gallery and LFC Elites. Currently the group has over 38,000 students at its campuses globally. Gisma’s operations will continue to remain separate from those of the GUS partner institutions.
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