The Creative Counsel (TCC) has launched an incubator programme to support black businesses in the marketing and advertising industry. In the first phase of the project, TCC will take five start-up businesses under its wing, which will be supported and mentored by the agency’s management team.
“We have opened applications for black start-ups in media, marketing, digital, mobile and activations. We have no interest in taking any equity in the businesses but are passionate about supporting them with the infrastructure and administrative and accounting processes to succeed,” says TCC’s group co-CEO Ran Neu-Ner.
“We believe successful black-owned businesses are the true measure of transformation. For as long as the advertising industry continues to find sophisticated methods of fronting and recycling the few black managers in the industry, economic transformation will not be achieved,” he said. “At TCC, we hope to confront and hopefully, eradicate this practice and foster true empowerment in the industry.”
Neu-Ner urged the advertising industry to relook its approach to transformation. “Getting our black friends to pitch for businesses so we tick the black supplier box does not aid in redressing the economic imbalance. Putting black CEOs in white owned businesses is not the answer either,” he said.
“The industry needs to invest in supporting black entrepreneurs in the industry establish their businesses and transfer skills. Mentorship is absolutely key in in this regard to ensure fledgling companies are given the best chance to succeed. You find a lot of small agencies starting up and fizzling out a year or two later because of lack of experience in business management,” adds Gil Oved TCC group co-CEO.
He said there was a social and business case for transformation in the brand communication industry as advertising, more than most sectors, has the country’s citizens at the core of the business.
“Advertising accurately reflects the demographics of South Africa as well as the values and aspirations of its people. As such the industry itself has to reflect this and contribute meaningfully to economic transformation in this country,” concludes Oved.
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