BASA Bulletin 2017 – Growth

Through skills development, BASA provides agency and access to the arts sector in order to support their engagement with the business sector. This year the aim is to start consolidating the diverse programmes, finding ways to ‘join the dots’ and ensure systemic change as opposed to individual programmes. In the mix is The Business Exchange Programme (currently under restructure), the BASA Creative Mapping System is awaiting go-ahead from funders and the RMB Ecosystems and Systemic Change Pilot: Keiskamma is currently in early development stage.


New collaborations emerge from key BASA programmes

Supported by the National Arts Council of South Africa, the BASA Basic Education Programme (targeting arts organisations and individuals nationally wishing to start a for-profit or nonprofit organisation), the BASA Dynamic Education Programme (aimed at registered arts organisations with a basic business model and plan in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Western Cape and Eastern Cape), and a national research project (informing the relevance and continued development of the BASA Education Programmes) have been completed. BASA’s experience in and learnings from these programmes are being fed into new collaborations to continue our work in growing the arts sector by providing and supporting knowledge transfer, skills development and training. These include the Creating Opportunity for South Africa’s Youth (COSY) and DAC Debut programmes.

COSY is coordinated by the British Council, in partnership with Business and Arts South Africa, LifeCo UnLtd South Africa and Livity Africa, and funded by the European Union. It aims to enable young people (particularly young women) in rural and semi-rural areas to be more active agents in achieving sustainable growth in South Africa. This is done by building their capacity to become entrepreneurs and by increasing their employability. The programme works in four provinces and eight communities and has a particular focus on creative, digital and social enterprise. The COSY launch was attended by 120 guests on 14 March 2017. A mapping study, preparation, and curriculum development is currently underway, and content delivery will begin early 2018 – for more information contact Onthatile Ditshego


The DAC Debut Programme partnership

The DAC Debut Programme sees BASA partnering with the Department of Arts and Culture and the National Lotteries Council (NLC) to further support emerging artists throughout South Africa with knowledge and skills development to enable them to shift from amateur to professional. As they launch/implement their first album, film or book, the Debut Programme will also enable participants to pitch for funding to further support their venture. The programme combines DAC Debut Funding with BASA’s Education and Mentorship Programmes, as well as opportunities to apply for BASA Supporting Grants (should applicants be eligible). The programme was launched in May, with initial workshops due to begin in the first three provinces end July. Additionally, BASA is partnering with community arts centres in each province for marketing and logistical support and a local point of contact, and will be training a representative from each arts centre as a co-facilitator in the programme who will also support delegates between workshop visits, and later be able to take on more facilitation within their community after completing this programme.

For more information contact Onthatile Ditshego or Tshepo Diseko


Business heavyweights help facilitate our Established Education Programme

The BASA Established Education Programme, supported by RMB, is for registered and more established organisations. This carefully constructed programme comprises strategy, marketing and audience development, operations, finance, and governance workshops, and is underpinned by assignments and mentorship. Participants are reporting solid organisational development and, in some cases, increased funding and audiences as a result of the programme. Recent workshop facilitators have included Amy Shelver (Head of Marketing and Communications, South African Cultural Observatory), Lauren Woolf ( Marketing and Communications, The Market Square), Celestine Williams (Cyan Development Concepts), Mike Joubert ( The Billybo Group ), and several BASA staff members. The final cycle for the current RMB supported programme is currently being rolled out in Gauteng, Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, and will be concluded later this year.

For more information contact Kim Sanssoucie


Development of Creative Markets Growth Hub picks up pace

Business and Arts South Africa, in partnership with British Council Connect ZA, have launched a groundbreaking project that aims to significantly impact the development and sustainability of South Africa’s creative market.  The project began with A Guide to Growing Creative Markets – launched in July 2016, the guide is an animated, interactive e-learning programme that provides tools and insights on how to become a self-sustainable business or organisation within the creative markets. This free open access online platform is specifically focused on training creatives, producers, arts organisations and practitioners interested in building their markets for consumers of creative practice, goods or services. The guide is the initial step in the larger vision towards the Creative Markets Growth Hub (CMGH), Powered by Business and Arts South Africa and British Council Connect ZA. The CMGH is intended to become a focal point for creative market development thinking, research and online training within Africa. An in-depth research phase was rolled out in 2016 in South Africa, Malawi, Zambia, and Zimbabwe to fully understand the challenges the creative services are facing in maintaining and developing their markets. This involved gaining insights and data using our research framework through focus groups with artists, art organisations, producers and enablers. As part of our knowledge exchange BASA also hosted Creative Market Growth Workshops as well as BASA Breakfasts for the private sector, government and policy makers around investments in the arts.

For more information about the CMGH, contact Kim Sanssoucie on 011 447 2295 or email at


BASA wraps up successful Cape Town Creative Market Growth Programme

Flowing out of BASA’s work on the CMGH, we successfully secured a tender with the City of Cape Town to implement a Creative Market Growth Programme for the city’s arts sector. The programme was multipronged, comprising workshops, mentorship and the development of a Creative Market Growth toolkit specific to the Cape Town arts sector. The purpose of the workshops was to clearly define and unpack what Creative Market Growth is, explore practical tools and ideas that individuals and creative and cultural organisations could use in their creative market growth plans and to start a conversation within the Cape Town arts sector around the importance of the ‘audience’. The programme also offered an opportunity for an exchange of effective and relevant strategies that various cultural organisations can employ to respond to market preferences, needs, motivations and barriers. The workshop learnings were supported by the toolkit with local case studies and extended through an implementation period supported by mentorship from the facilitators. The rollout of this programme is complete and we are currently in reporting phase.

BASA Audience Development - Cape Town
BASA Audience Development – Cape Town