financial times ie business school
Who we are

Collaborative excellence

IE Business School and Financial Times share a commitment to excellence and a passion for chronicling the constantly evolving economic landscape.

Headspring is a joint-venture between the Financial Times and IE Business School established in 2015. Founded on the principle that executive development needs to be collaborative, relevant and measurable, Headspring’s purpose is to design a new and more relevant approach to executive development that would be fit for the challenges and business environment of the 21st century.

The expertise of Financial Times

The highly influential FT journalists that deliver our programmes offer not only a unique perspective on the events that shape the world of business, but also bring an approach that shapes the way we work with our clients. They are inquisitive. They are close to the source. They know the breakthroughs before they become trends and understand the small details of policy that can make or break a business.

The learning innovation of IE Business School

From its foundation, IE Business School has made it their business to disrupt. A triple-accredited institution, it offers the world’s number one distance online MBA (QS, 2021). Through technological immersion and a culture of innovation, IE brings an entrepreneurial mindset that gives our programs a sharper edge and greater impact.
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Meaningful partnerships, true customisation

“In everything we do we have to consider what this could look like in the press. Having an FT journalist to bring this home was very powerful and made a real impact.”
— Bahare Heywood, Clifford Chance

Headspring is committed to value creation for people and businesses. We achieve transformational results by working in partnership with organisations globally to co-create bespoke, future-focused learning designs that empower people, develop leaders and enhance the strengths of businesses.

Our work begins with a blank canvas and, through real collaboration, we gain in-depth understanding of your business’s learning needs and strategic goals.

Learners experience an environment where ideas and norms are continuously challenged by seasoned business practitioners, future-focused academic theory and some of the world’s most influential journalists.

We inject an ethos of continuous learning into your business, empowering your people to convert challenges into springboards to success.

Why us

Stories of impact

Our clients are leaders in their fields and expect the best, but you don’t need to take our word for it. Take theirs:

It’s more than just faculty, they’re extremely flexible in terms of programme design. They’re also ready to co-create. We can bring in top-level executives to help deliver the course, as well as actors, writers, journalists. Rory Simpson, Chief Learning Officer
It has been a real pleasure. Working with the FT is an important part of the whole programme for us. We work closely to design a programme that works in the context of our business, and one that we can roll out across the globe. Bahare Heywood, Chief Risk and Compliance Officer
The methods and expertise, combined with the magnificent faculty, were the main reason to choose them. José Miguel Caras, Learning & Development Director
We identified a rich thread of FT insight which we wanted to use in the most effective way. The result was a perfectly tailored learning solution. Jeni Taylor, Former Head of Business Performance and Leadership
The alliance

Our global, yet local, executive network

The Headspring Alliance is a network of top business schools and learning organisations – globally as well as in their region and country. They bring international and local expertise to our programmes and a wide range of capabilities, faculty and resources.

Our people

Expertise and experience

Our people embody our global approach, working across Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and Asia. We build multidisciplinary teams around our clients to understand strategic challenges and develop executive education programmes that create value.

Gustav Nordback | Chief Executive Officer | Headspring Executive Development

Gustaf Nordbäck

Chief Executive Officer
With a successful track record in the financial and education sectors, Gustaf brings valuable experience of growing businesses that have brought a disruptive approach to the status quo and a unique insight into companies’ strategic needs.
Liz-anne Gayle | Global Head of Learning and Innovation | Headspring Executive Development

Liz-Ann Gayle

Global Head of Learning and Innovation
Liz-Ann's team brings innovative learning methods, technology and impact measurement tools to our programmes. With a background in financial services and leadership development, Liz-Ann helps us deliver real impact.
Monika Steiner ! Programme Director ! Headspring Executive Development

Monika Steiner

Global Head of Customer Experience
Monika is responsible for business expansion and maintaining a strong working relationship with clients. She helps clients acquire applicable knowledge, practical skills, aligned behaviours and the right emotional attitudes.
Antonio Montes | Chief Relationship Officer | Headspring Executive Development

Antonio Montes

Chief Relationship Officer
With extensive experience in the executive education sector, Antonio maintains essential connections across our worldwide alliance of partners. He holds leadership positions in international organisations promoting cross-border learning collaboration and development.
Malek Adjerad | Associate Director of Learning and Design | Headspring Executive Development

Malek Adjerad

Director of Learning and Design
Malek brings a wealth of experience in L&D with a strong background in managing operations, performance consulting, business partnering and delivering projects that are practical and impactful.
Didina Gonzalez ! Director of Learning and Design ! Headspring Executive Development

Didina Gonzalez

Director of Learning and Design
With 15 years of experience in higher education. Didina brings valuable experience in programme design in using cutting-edge instructional technology to enhance the learning experience and maximise impact.

Angela Mackay

Non-executive Director
Angela Mackay is a non-executive director for Headspring. Mackay is the Global Publisher of FT Live and Managing Director of FT Asia Pacific. Based in Hong Kong, she is a member of the FT’s global board and focuses on developing the group’s significant potential across Asia Pacific. She also leads business and strategy developments for events, membership and communities globally.

James Lamont

Non-executive Director
James Lamont is Financial Times' Director of Strategic Partnerships. Lamont is responsible for identifying new partnership opportunities for the Financial Times and leading existing initiatives. In his previous role as Managing Editor, Lamont oversaw staffing and strategic planning of the FT's editorial department.

Teresa Martín-Retortillo Rubio

Non-executive Director
Teresa Martín-Retortillo is the Executive President of executive education at IE Business School. She also leads innovation in open programs both online and face-to-face. She is also a non-executive director at Bankinter and EVO Bankon. Teresa has held senior positions at McGraw-Hill Education, Bain & Company.

Diego del Alcázar Benjumea

Non-executive Director
Diego del Alcázar Benjumea is CEO and Vice President of IE University and sits on its Board of Directors. Diego plays a key role in the strategic vision and the general management of the institution, highly focused on promoting the innovation strategy and its execution. He is the driver of IE’s digital transformation,leading IE’s technological immersion.

Santiago Iñiguez de Onzoño

Non-executive Director
Santiago Iñiguez de Onzoño is the Vice-Chairman of Headspring. He is also the President of IE University and a recognized influencer in global higher education. Iniguez is the former Dean of IE Business School and has played a leading role in business education. He was portrayed by the Financial Times as “one of the most significant figures in promoting European business schools internationally”.

Tas Viglatzis

Non-executive Director
Tas Viglatzis is a founding member of the Headspring Board. He served as Chairman of Headspring from its inception until 2020 and is now a non-executive director. He has more than 15 years of experience in education and the wider media sector, having founded and a language learning service, and served as the Managing Director of Pearson English at Pearson Plc. Tas also spent 7 years with the Financial Times, where he was appointed chief financial officer.

Juan José Güemes

Non-executive Director
Juan José Güemes joined IE University in March 2010, as Chairman of the Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, after seventeen years of intense political activity. He had previously served in a broad range of government departments, including tourism, finance and employment, gender policies, and health. Since January 2012, he is also IE VP of Economic Affairs.

James Lund

Non-executive Director
James Lund has been Chief Financial Officer of the Financial Times Group since December 2015 and in August 2021 also took on the role of Chief Operations Officer. He has been with the Financial Times since 2012 and was a key member of the team who sold the FT to Nikkei Inc. During his career he has held various finance roles at British Airways, TalkTalk and Centrica. He graduated from Manchester University with an honours degree in Computer Science and is a qualified management accountant (CIMA).
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Global educator network

Expertise, delivered

Our clients demand deep expertise in a broad range of areas. Working with over 500 thought leaders, academics, consultants, practitioners and coaches means we can deliver global or local expertise anywhere, at any time.

are former CEOs or senior executives
have consulting and business advisory experience
are from top 20 globally ranked universities
are from top 3 business schools in their countries
FT journalists who are experts in the most recent, relevant business issues
countries where we currently operate
have delivered programmes in more than 10 countries
languages we can deliver in: Arabic, English, French, German, Mandarin, Portuguese and Spanish
Challenging mindsets

We don't have the answers

Global organisations today face complex issues that can’t be solved by generic solutions.

We don’t approach a client assuming we will have all the answers. We listen. We challenge assumptions. We work with you to co-create customised executive development solutions which not only ask the right questions but, crucially, offer the right answers.

An inquisitive mindset – combined with real business acumen and reinforced by solid academic methodology – underpins our approach to everything we do.

Our programmes can empower and create value for your people and your businesses.

Find out more
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Global L&D Research

Explore our Research

We are committed to having a deep understanding of the challenges our clients face. Above all, we are committed to sharing what we find.

Visit our research section and understand the changing face of leadership and management through exclusive reports and insights on topics impacting business globally.