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South African entrepreneur Nicholas Chronias has put his University of Liverpool MBA knowledge to good use by starting two new businesses. A December 2011 graduate from the online MBA programme, he is Director of Eco-Cycle (Pty) Ltd, Nogada Guarding Services and Co-Founder of Pana (Pty) Ltd, Johannesburg.

“What I really liked about the online MBA was the flexibility and the design that fitted in with my lifestyle.”

What motivated you to study for an online MBA from the University of Liverpool?

I was attracted by the University’s reputation, and the flexibility and structure of the programme. I was looking for self-enrichment and for a way to expand my knowledge and broaden my scope both in business and personally. The MBA programme has done all of that and it’s still helping me to get the best out of myself and my businesses.

Why did the online programme work so well for you as a businessman?

Thanks to the flexible, online format, I was able to study for my MBA while I continued in business. It really fitted my lifestyle. I started in 2007, took a year out in 2009 because so much was happening in my life (including getting married) and I started again in September 2010.

Has the MBA had a positive impact on your business life?

Yes. It’s really been an apply-as-you-learn process. Much of what I learned I applied in my business life, and I continue to do so. When I started the MBA programme I was already running a recycling company. I started two new businesses – in security services and women’s clothing - using the knowledge and skills gained during the MBA programme.

What challenges did you face during the MBA programme?

I needed the discipline to stay the course and see it through to the end. Fortunately, the programme is structured so that you can’t deviate too much. This really helps to keep you focused. I fitted the online study into my life simply by dedicating time to it – as I do to other projects. I made it a priority in my life.

I would recommend online study with the University of Liverpool because…

You will be sharing practices with people from all over the world in the virtual classroom, gaining different perspectives and engaging in positive reflection on your own professional and life experiences.

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