About us

Advancing Business Education

ABE is a not-for-profit skills development specialist and awarding organisation providing internationally recognised learning and credentials, and quality assurance. 

Our expertise is the development of business and entrepreneurship skills, and we make a difference to the lives of people in some of the world’s poorest countries.  We work with a network of international partners to develop skills that empower individuals, reduce gender inequality and tackle extreme poverty.   Our expertise in operating on a transnational scale, and in some of the world’s most challenging environments, makes us the partner of choice to support governments and organisations in the deployment of economic capacity building projects. 

Our skills development services also include helping employers to transform their business with our training solutions, helping schools develop their student's business and entrepreneurial know-how and enabling individuals to become professionally qualified business practitioners through our network of high-quality accredited centres.

We are a strategic partner of the Commonwealth Enterprise & Investment Council and a member of the Federation of Awarding bodies (see more about these organisations below).

Our story

ABE was founded in 1973, originally with the name The Association of Business Executives.  The organisation had a clear social purpose: to improve business education for aspiring entrepreneurs in developing countries. This mission required courage, resilience, and the determination to make a difference - all of which have become defining features of the ABE way.

ABE has now expanded its reach across four continents. We now work with employers, governments, NGOs, regulators and education providers throughout the world. We’re constantly updating our business education products and services to help organisations and individuals develop the skills needed to adapt to rapidly changing marketplaces in both established and emerging economies and, in this way, we are contributing to the development of a highly skilled global workforce.

From our qualifications portfolio, 1.5 million people have mastered essential and advanced modern business concepts, and ABE continues to play a vital role in helping to diversify and grow economies, reducing inequality within and among countries.  In this respect, the impact that ABE qualifications have extends far beyond our students, our alumni go on to lead change, inspire communities and build successful social or commercial enterprises all over the world.

It's our proud 'first-mover' heritage and our ongoing commitment to make a difference to the lives of individuals, communities and organisations, so that they can all meet the challenges of a dynamic, unpredictable, but more connected world, which make ABE a true pioneer in global business education.

Our Mission

To make a difference in the world as the global leader in high-quality, accessible learning journeys which lead to internationally-recognised credentials in business and entrepreneurship -  enabling people everywhere to realise their potential.

Our Vision

  • To be the international first-choice awarding organisation in the arena of business and entrepreneurship.

  • To be the pioneering provider of curriculum solutions which help bridge the global skills gap.

  • To lead the market in customer experience and value-for-money, and to have that commitment at the heart of everything we do.

  • To be passionate about making our educational programmes accessible, by working with strategic partners all over the world.

  • To deliver the highest quality experience in all that we do.

  • To ensure that ABE credentials are innovative and recognised by universities and employers.

  • To be focused on responding to the evolving needs of our learners, members and centres.

  • To always act with integrity, openness and respect for others.

Our President: Dr Edward de Bono

Nominated for the Nobel Prize for Economics in 2005, ABE’s president, Edward de Bono, is regarded by many as the leading authority in the field of creative thinking, innovation and the teaching of thinking as a skill.  He is the originator of the concept of Lateral Thinking and has written over 70 books which have been translated into over 40 languages. 

Our trade memberships

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Commonwealth Enterprise & Investment Council

This is a not-for-profit membership organisation with a mandate from Commonwealth Heads of Government to promote intra-Commonwealth trade, investment and the role of the private sector across the 53 member countries.  ABE is a strategic partner.


UK Skills Partnership

ABE is affiliated to the UK Skills Partnership: a collective of leading organisations in the UK skills sector, working together to offer integrated solutions in vocational skills development to international partners around the world.   

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Federation of Awarding Bodies

ABE is a member of the Federation of Awarding Bodies: a trade association representing the collective interests of the UK’s qualifications and assessments industry.