BASA Supporting Grants for 2021

(L) Charmaine Soobramoney: BASA Chairman and (R) Ashraf Johaardien: BASA CEO. Photos by Theana Breugem.

(L) Charmaine Soobramoney: BASA Chairman and (R) Ashraf Johaardien: BASA CEO. Photos by Theana Breugem.

In 2021, BASA’s Supporting Grants Programme continues to synergise business and art relationships and is currently open for applications.

Since inception, Business and Arts South Africa NPC (BASA) has been a significant catalyst and connector, both cementing and amplifying powerful partnerships between more than 1 600 business and arts partners, to effect meaningful social change.

“Over the years, volatile economic conditions have incrementally increased the pressure on business to justify the value and benefit of partnering with the creative sector, as arts-related benefits are often deemed to be intangible; difficult to quantify in terms of return on investment,” says BASA Chairman, Charmaine Soobramoney. “The BASA model has continued to deliver value to our stakeholders, partners and sponsors, with every R1 million of Supporting Grant funding allocated to projects leveraging R10 million in support from the private sector during the last financial year,” she adds.

BASA CEO, Ashraf Johaardien explains that BASA’s Supporting Grant Programme assists in activating sponsorship for a cross-section of arts projects in different regions of the country, by providing vital financial support to a project that is in an existing business and art relationship: “To date, BASA has disbursed over R40 million to more than 1 600 projects, which in turn has leveraged in excess of R515 million in sponsorship from the business sector.

“BASA Grants have a slightly different lens to conventional funding and development agencies, in that our focus is on amplifying and extending existing partnerships between arts and businesses that aim to meaningfully impact society through shared value and social cohesion. So, it is important for prospective applicants to note that the purpose of Supporting Grants has never been to fund projects per se, but rather to support partnerships between the business sector and the creative sector.”

The application process for Supporting Grants has been simplified, with interested parties simply submitting a formal letter of interest as a first step, and BASA then inviting eligible applicants to complete an online application. The first deadline for letters of interest is 22 January 2021. Visit, click on the ‘Grants’ tab and navigate to ‘Supporting Grants’ for detailed criteria and further guidelines. Note that the decision of the BASA Board of Directors with regard to the outcomes of Supporting Grant Programme applications is final and no further correspondence will be entered into. Enquiries may be directed to Sipho Mthiyane at

Notes to Editors

Funded by an allocation from the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture (DSAC), BASA’s Supporting Grant programme continues to serve as a mechanism through which business and the arts can engage and achieve mutual benefit. Through these grants, BASA equips artists/arts organisations with the tools to support an approach to a potential sponsor, and to provide such a sponsor with the wherewithal to leverage the proposed partnership, and its marketing, effectively. The grants encompass a wide range of activity, attracting corporate sector support and, where possible, BASA leverages the arts or culture project further through its own platforms and partnerships.

BASA is constituted in terms of the new Companies Act and is registered as a public benefit organisation and champions business investment within the arts, culture, and heritage sector. The Board of Directors comprises Chairman Charmaine Soobramoney, with Deputy Chair Mandie van der Spuy, and Kojo Baffoe, Kathy Berman, Devi Sankaree Govender, Ashraf Johaardien (CEO), Hilton Lawler, Khanyi Mamba, Unathi Malunga, Makgati Molebatsi, Zingisa Motloba, Dr Yacoob Abba Omar, and Mirna Wessels. For more information or to become a member please visit

Sne Mdiya
Business and Arts South Africa