Business Canvas Model Boot Camp at DFM 2015

The Durban FilmMart (DFM), in partnership with the Documentary Filmmakers’ Association, the Canadian Film Center (CFC) Media Lab and the National Film and Video Foundation, will be hosting one-and-a-half day closed workshops on the powerful Business Model Canvas (BMC) tool for South African filmmakers at this year’s DFM which takes place during the Durban International Film Festival from July 17 to 20.

The success of Alex Osterwalder’s book Business Model Generation and subsequent workshops based on the book has resulted in the demystification of business model design. With BMC, licensed under Creative Commons, Osterwalder and his associates have created a visualisation tool to help business owners determine which set of business models may work for their product. The Business Model Canvas is a design tool to help businesses to get their first principles right – starting with who their customer might be.

The BMC Boot Camp will walk participants through the Business Model Canvas using methods developed by Osterwalder and further evolved by the CFC Media Lab for the creative content industries. The workshop will take a participatory approach in order to create an empowering and interactive working environment that fosters understanding, discussion, creativity and analysis. The workshop team will lead content producers through a series of exercises in order to help participants identify their various business models and provide blueprints for their current and future projects.

Filmmakers will learn how to apply BMC to each individual project, identifying the different elements, connecting them, and learning how to integrate them in order to enhance their work and deliver an optimal final product. Due to its visual and narrative approach to business planning, the model is easy to understand and interpret for those who lack training in business management theory.

In addition to this practical application to current projects, six South African trainers will learn to train content producers how to use the tool, thus expanding the legacy of the programme beyond the Durban FilmMart. It is anticipated that BMC will become a widely used tool in the South African and African film industries.

Tshego Molefe, a member of the Documentary Filmmakers Association who participated in a BMC workshop in 2014, had this to say:  “The Business Model Canvas allowed me to view the documentary process in a different form. Pulling back from the story and getting a bird’s eye view of the entire process was refreshing and helpful, especially to a producer who wants to maintain a sustained business around production.”

The 6th Durban FilmMart takes place in Durban, at the Tsogo Sun Elangeni from 17 to 20 July, during the 36th edition of the Durban International Film Festival (16-26 July). For more information on the Durban FilmMart and to register as a delegate visit

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