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“I don’t need an MBA. I’ve got an MBA in life!”

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Mascolo followed in his hairdresser father’s footsteps when he lauched his first salon in 1963. But his father’s one-shop business was no preparation for the international superbrand he would go on to build.

Today, Toni & Guy comprises 405 salons and turns over £175m. But Mascolo was never tempted to take the academic route to business. "I didn’t have time to do an MBA," he says. "But I also have lots of young guys coming to me that I don’t have time to teach. I send them to business school. They still need my advice at the end.

"If you think how many leases I’ve taken, how many contracts I’ve done…" he continues. "People talk about MBAs – I don’t need one. I’ve had an MBA in life. I’ve done thousands of leases on shops as well as everything else."

But Mascolo knows there’s a limit to his business knowledge. And for problems outside his sphere of knowledge or influence, he brings in the big guns. "I’ve got more than three lawyers working under me, and maybe hundreds of accountants," he says. "If you need someone really specialised, you hire someone. I don’t have to learn everything myself."

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