South African Creative Startup to compete in Denmark
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Mon, 11 Sep 2017 10:24
SA winner, Sanmarie Vivier of Smir Design

In a largely unnoticed world, millions of South Africans labour daily, alongside but often unseen by ordinary citizens. This resourceful band of workers silently contributes over R 90 thousand million rand to our economy each year.

These creative entrepreneurs toil tirelessly, often not enjoying the same recognition as people with 'real’ jobs. Unfortunately, many of these extraordinary people in the arts sector don't see themselves as business people either.
But there is someone who does: Creative Business Cup recognises entrepreneurs in the arts, it champions and empowers creative business people.

By participating in the Creative Business Cup competition, artists, designers, performers, musicians, crafters, authors ... get high profile publicity, exposure to market opportunities, access to funding and a valuable business network. And respect.
One will even compete against the top creative startups from over 60 countries, in Denmark.

This year, the auspicious competition was held in collaboration with Small Business Expo. The two-day intensive business skills boot camp was honoured with presentations by a line-up of over 20 experts in business, entrepreneurship and the arts.

The pitch camp day also provided the nine anxious contestants with expert training in pitching in pursuit of the national crown.
Judging was no less stressful for the adjudicators, but finally Smir Design emerged as the South African winner who will compete against the world’s best in Copenhagen this November.

The presenters and judges, to whom we are extremely grateful are: Alexander Simpson, Bongi Dhlomo, Bra Willy Seyama, Darlene Menzies, David Hounson, Dylan Piatti, Eugenie Drakes, Fredell Jacobs, Grant Newell, Kgomotso Mautloa, Lazola Belle, Lufuno Muthubi, Marang Marekimane, Mawetu Soga, Mohammed Jogie, Neo Rakgane, Petro Bothma, Phuti Manguba, Precious Mvulane, Shirley Anthony, Sibusiso Mkhwanazi, Thabang Butelezi, and Thapelo Tsiu.

The 2017 contestants were: Brainbow Conscious Creatives, BrownChild, Ciamsomi Promotional Products Solutions, Creative L'amour, EmagAlex Parks, Hustlenomics, Modular Innobox, Smir Design, and South Revolution. Short clips of the pitches can be watched on the Creative Business Cup website.
The event would not have been possible without the extraordinary generosity of Reed Exhibitions.

The future for creative businesses is rosy. In 2018, Creative Business Cup South Africa will be inviting startups in the arts to apply to participate in provincial run-offs and the winners will again compete for the national crown and stand the opportunity to represent South Africa against all the world’s winners in Kψbenhavn.

One obvious outcome of this year’s amazing exercise is that a vast reservoir of expertise and contacts has been built so that a lot more value can be made available to participants than the competition alone. Competitors and presenters should also be able to get access to market, finance, advice, support, learning and contacts.

It is proposed that a Creative Business Cup Forum be established to give effect to this vision and this has been proposed to the participants in the inaugural competition. Interested people and businesses are welcome to contact the organisers via the website.

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