The British Horseracing Authority (BHA), Horserace Betting Levy Board (HBLB) and the University of Liverpool have today announced the launch of the inaugural Thoroughbred Horseracing Industries MBA. Applications for the course – the first of its kind within the British Racing industry – are now open, with the first term beginning in September 2015.

The launch of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Industries MBA provides an opportunity to nurture and develop future business leaders for the industry, thereby helping to secure a strong future for the sport.

The course is designed for individuals already working in British racing or anyone wishing to embark upon a career in the industry. Employers within the sport are also being urged to enrol suitable employees to the course, so that their business can benefit from the expertise of the MBA and develop future leaders.

The programme combines the modules of a world class MBA with the specialised needs of the British and global horseracing industry. The MBA will address the needs of all key stakeholders in the industry.

The core elements of the programme include leadership, strategy, managing the environment, innovation, entrepreneurship and managing financial resources. Each candidate will also gain understanding of management of racecourses and training centres, marketing, advertising, sponsorship, bloodstock management and veterinary issues.

The course offers vocational training through industry placements and visits to racecourses, studs, training facilities, media companies and companies in the betting industry. It is a 12 month full-time programme or 24 month part-time programme, the latter designed in particular for candidates in current employment.

Provided by the University of Liverpool, the programme combines the expertise of the University’s Management School in sports industry management with the specialist equine knowledge of the School of Veterinary Science and the University’s world class equine facilities at its Leahurst campus. The programme will be led by Tom Cannon, Professor of Strategic Development and the University of Liverpool Management School. The University of Liverpool also offers a similar MBA for the football industry which is rated in the top 10 global sports MBAs. British Horseracing has become the first sport after football to offer such a course.

There are seven scholarship places available on the 2015/16 course, sponsored by a combination of the BHA, HBLB and the University of Liverpool. More information about all aspects of the course can be found at www.liverpool.ac.uk/horseracingmba/.

Carole Goldsmith, Director of People and Development for the BHA, said:

“We are delighted to launch and help fund the Thoroughbred Horseracing Industries MBA, a new world-class educational programme, created to cultivate leaders in the racing industry. The highly-regarded British Horseracing Graduate Programme and Management Academy have proven successful in nurturing promising leaders in the industry and this MBA will complement these courses, while offering an even higher level of qualification for successful candidates.

“The course is the first of its kind in racing and offers top class teaching and is a world-wide recognised qualification. The course is an exciting opportunity for those wishing to develop their career in the racing industry as well as for employers, who are set to reap the benefits of enrolling their employees on the course by creating business leaders of the future who have an in-depth understanding of Racing.

“It is fitting that Racing now joins Football as the only two sports offering such an opportunity. Racing is the second biggest sporting industry in the country, supporting in the region of 85,000 employees nationwide directly or indirectly and with an economic impact of nearly £3.5bn.

“Our thanks go to the University of Liverpool for their vision and commitment to the programme.”

Alan Delmonte, Chief Executive of the HBLB, said:

“The Board was persuaded two years ago of the benefits in creating a specialist MBA and, with the BHA, set about finding a suitable partner institution. The University of Liverpool was chosen after a rigorous process in which its outstanding academic reputation and Tom Cannon’s great enthusiasm and personal belief in the course proved compelling.

“As well as encouraging applications from individuals within and outside the sport, we will be calling on organisations in Racing, Breeding and Betting actively to consider suitable candidates from their workforce. The MBA has the potential to take to a new level the attractiveness of Racing as a long-term executive and business career for both domestic and overseas applicants.”

Adam Waterworth, Managing Director of Goodwood Racecourse, said:

“‘The Thoroughbred Horseracing Industries MBA is a key development for British Racing. It will provide a unique opportunity for those wishing to pursue a career in the sport. This will undoubtedly help racing to continue to be one of the biggest employers in the sports industry.

“It is the forward thinking of the BHA, HBLB and the University of Liverpool that will ensure that the sport continues to grow.’

Jake Warren, of Highclere Stud, said:

“The Thoroughbred Horseracing Industries MBA is a really exciting development for British Racing. The course will undoubtedly provide fantastic opportunities for its students and graduates of it seeking employment across the industry will have to be taken very seriously. The BHA, HBLB and University of Liverpool deserve enormous credit for bringing this unique opportunity to life.”