The GISB-ISDE combo want to augment the breadth and depth of managerial talent at a rapid pace in India.

Hailing from the footballing capital of Europe for the last four years – Madrid – Juan Jose Sanchez Puig certainly knows what sport is all about. When such minds integrate themselves into the process of preparing future generations to unbridled benefits in the field of sports, it helps one and all and produces unprecedented results.

And it is no different in the case of Juan Jose, who’s a multi-sports fan. The man has been a director with ‘The Instituto Superior de Derecho y Economía (ISDE)’ for a long time now and collaborated in the design of the academic curriculum for the ‘Global Institute of Sports Business’  GISB-ISDE Certificate in Sports Management course based out of Mumbai, Maharashtra.

Asked about his Indian plans and why India of all countries, Puig has a point-blank answer that sounds like a plan. “We look at the market’s need and opportunity. The Indian sports industry is growing at a rapid pace and is estimated to be a $10 billion industry by 2025. Most of the world’s biggest sports brands have either setup businesses here or are currently working on their India market-entry strategies and thus, the country definitely requires trained professionals to join the workforce.”

Without mincing words, he continued, “ISDE has wide international experience, with students and teachers from all over the world. For the last four years, ISDE has been working in India, with different universities and companies. The experience helped in the collaboration with GISB. The institution focuses on excellence, practical and international training. We are very happy to transmit our knowledge to the Indian professionals who will work in the sports world.”

We get into the nitty-gritties of the idea and Puig takes a poignant moment when asked about the need of the GISB. “Well, sports in India is at a threshold and very soon, we shall witness a point of inflexion. For this exponential growth to happen, it is imperative that we augment breadth and depth of managerial talent at a rapid pace. We felt we could serve as a catalyst in this process by getting actively involved in shaping the sports education landscape. Thus, we are collaborating with GISB to reinvent sports education in India.”

The ISDE has been in business for 26 years now, since 1992 and has redefined sports education in Spain. Thus, its Indian counterpart, the GISB will ensure it continues to ride on the same confidence and respect in the sub-continent. Both ISDE and GISB believe in the importance of having the right faculty with extensive industry experience. Since this is a professional program, the educators feel that the majority of the faculty of any sports education program should be actively working within the industry in order to provide students with the right insight.

What difference will the GISB-ISDE combination provide to its students? Puig, with a tinge of excitement in his eyes, opens up. He answers, “Students will receive an excellent instruction to offer students an opportunity to understand the landscape better and help them to identify what part of the industry is best aligned with their interests and strengths.”

The academic curriculum is focused on a global landscape and will be taught by industry experts, giving students the correct platform for sports management education. The ISDE Program Director, Alexander Berger, will work very closely with the GISB Program Director, Neel Shah, through various visits, video conferences and calls to ensure the students are in the best hands.

Talking about other parts involved in the project Juan Jose adds, “India on Track has been a pioneer in driving sports development in India and they have the best team, knowhow and expertise for us to partner for the program. There are many other factors which help us evaluate our entry into different geographies, but in this case, GISB checked all the right boxes.”


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Comparing the ideated classroom experience at GISB to other universities globally, Puig gives an insight on how this is completely different. “We bank on real-life professional situations, guest lectures, business ethics and personality skills and internships more than theory. We have addressed all of these in our course design and all GISB-ISDE Certificate in Sports Management students will complete the 15-month program with a deep understanding of how the industry functions. They will be ready to face the highly-competitive world of sports.”

With such dynamism about the international industry, how will the Indian students continue their relevance with the local sports industry that’s on a positive incline? Puig plans to incorporate the best in-class global curriculum, with global affiliates such as the Premier League. The GISB will also help interested students to take sport trips to the UK and has planned it in a way that it is layered with an Indian context, to ensure students are in touch with the realities of the local industry here in India at all times.

GISB has addressed that by having a fine group of faculty members who have industry experience and more importantly are committed to supporting students to reach their full potential.  The individuals who have joined GISB’s faculty have not only worked in the sports industry for many years, but many have actually acted as pioneers in developing various aspects of the ecosystem.  

GISB has managed to pick affiliations with organisations like FC Pune City, Perform Group, Multifit and others. These top domestic sports organizations will help and ensure that students get access to relevant case studies, guest lecturers and live project experiences.

Concluding the conversation, Puig just wants the students to work hard and leave 15 months of their growth in the best hands of the industry. He drew the interaction to a close saying, “The curriculum we have designed along with the professional approach to the course will ensure that you will be ready to face the challenges the industry throws at you. We are very confident that our alumnus will form the next set of leaders of the sports industry, not only in India but globally.”