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South Africa’s largest advertising and marketing agency The Creative Counsel (TCC) has launched an incubator to support transformation in the industry.
Five black-owned startups in media, marketing, digital, mobile industries will be supported and mentored by the agency’s management team. In a recent press release, co-CEO of TCC Ran Neu-Ner notes that the group will not take equity in participating businesses.
“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,” Neu-Ner 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 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 added 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.
Last year, French advertising giant Publicis acquired TCC in record deal, estimated to be worth over R1.5-billion.
For more information on the TCC incubator programme, feel free to mail firstname.lastname@example.org.