Age: 137

History: Set up by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the school has always had a quality approach to business training, and is now on the same page as the top establishments in Europe.

Address: Situated in Talence, in a bustling university campus well-served by public transport just 15 minutes by tram from the centre of Bordeaux. The city was recently named a World Heritage site by UNESCO, and is steeped in culture and close to beaches, the Pyrenees and the world-renowned vineyards and countryside. Bordeaux is blazing a trail in France at the moment, with 16,000 new businesses being created every year.

Ambience: Spread over two campuses. The recently built executive centre that houses the MBA provision has top facilities: conference and computer rooms and an excellent library. Career centre advisers serve both current students and alumni, and each year the school welcomes around 350 recruiters to its "business week", where students meet representatives from companies such as IBM, Philips, PriceWaterhouseCoopers and JP Morgan.

Vital statistics: A Grande Ecole with 2,200 students and triple accreditation from AMBA, EQUIS, and AACSB. The school runs 12 programmes, from undergraduate courses to tailor-made management development programmes, as well as an executive MBA.

Added value: The unique, part-time Wine MBA aims to cover the main issues in the wine industry worldwide, as well as the major wine-producing and consuming markets. The school is also strong in industrial management training: a Masters in purchasing is taught part-time in Paris and full-time in Bordeaux.

Easy to get into? A degree or equivalent is required, and for the MBA you'll also need a minimum of five years' management experience and fluency in English, as well as a good GMAT score (in some cases).

Glittering alumni: Bob Anderson, CEO, Supremecorq; Jean-Julien Baronnet, General Director EurOpacorp, Michel Dubarry, President, France Rolls Royce; Bruno Pavlovsky, General Director, Chanel Mode; Zéphirin Diabre, Chairman, Africa and the Middle East, AREVA.

International connections: A third of the faculty is international, with 100 partner universities in 44 countries. The diverse cultural mix on campus encourages international networking, and each programme offers an experience abroad (either academic or professional).

Student profile: The average age on the MBA is 38, with 13 years of work experience.

Cost: The wine MBA is €26,000, the MSc in management is €16, 000.

Return on investment: Great networking, improved chances of promotion and a large salary increase.

Who's the boss? Philip McLaughlin is the Dean of BEM.

Prospectus: +33 (0)5 56 84 55 55;