IE Business School, Madrid

Age: 38

History: Founded in 1973 by two entrepreneurs. At the time there were no private business schools in Madrid, and none providing MBAs. Also known as Instituto de Empresa.

Address: In the financial heart of the capital.

Ambience: The main part of the school occupies several turn-of-the-century mansion buildings, surrounded by a walled garden. The traditional structure has been extensively modernised, and there are several new buildings housing a virtual library, computer rooms and space for the executive programme. It's also near Serrano Street, which bursts with stylish shops and embassies.

Vital statistics: A private, non-profit organisation and one of the largest business schools in Spain. It has 450 members of staff with 100 full-time professors and more than 37,000 alumni. The school offers a wide range of programmes, including international, executive and global MBAs as well as a portfolio of Masters programmes in management, finance, sports management, telecoms and digital business.

Added value: Entrepreneurialism and innovation is at the core of all the MBA programmes: all students have to develop their own business plans and on completion of the course, around 10 per cent of them become entrepreneurs. Five years after graduation, a quarter will have taken the same route.

Easy to get into? You need a degree, professional experience and a good score at the school's own admission test (or the GMAT/GRE tests) and a successful interview.

Glittering alumni: Gerhard Gross, president and managing director, Daimler Chrysler Spain; Daniel Kostel, vice president, Metropolitan West Capital Management; Roger Lakhani, CFO, Atlantis Group; Richard Alden, CEO, ONO.

International connections: More than 85 per cent of students on the international MBA are from outside Spain, mainly from Europe, Asia, the USA and Central and South America. The school also has connections with 45 institutions around the world, including the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business; Fudan University in Shanghai; and the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad. It's also a founder member of SUMAQ, an alliance of eight business schools in the Spanish and Portuguese speaking world.

Gurus: Fernando Bartolomé, organisational behaviour; Ignacio de la Vega, corporate entrepreneurship; David Allen, the entertainment industry; Luis Solis, strategic operations management; David Bach, non-market strategy.

Student profile: The average age on the international MBA is 28, with a male to female ratio of 3:1.

Cost: The international MBA is €53,200 while the international executive MBA is €55,200.

Return on investment: Students enjoy a 68 per cent salary hike on average.

Who's the boss? Santiago Iñiguez de Ozoño?is the school’s dean.

Prospectus: +34 91 5 689 610;;