The announcement of COVID-19 Alert Level One earlier this month saw local businesses breathe a
little easier as doors opened wider to broader economic opportunities.
To support local businesses across the board, from one-person SMMEs to corporates, a number of
key public, private and NPO stakeholders are joining forces to initiate a “Made in Cape Town”
movement that will surface and celebrate products and services of a Cape Town origin.
The “Made in Cape Town” movement is managed by the Craft and Design Institute (CDI) in
partnership with the City of Cape Town’s Enterprise and Investment Department. It aims to
demonstrate the strength of what can be achieved when public and private entities come together to
support the reopening of the economy.
“The primary goal at this stage,” says Erica Elk, Group CEO of the CDI, “is to unearth and showcase
what Cape Town has created. And to encourage locals to support local.
“The ‘Made in Cape Town’ movement provides the CDI with an additional channel to connect local
businesses with economic opportunities that will help them recover. It speaks to the objectives of
several of our other projects, one being the RE:SOLVE Challenge which enables innovative
entrepreneurs to take their first steps in prototyping new local products and services.”
Elk elaborates: “Through ‘Made in Cape Town’ we are calling on the public and local businesses to tell
us what excites them about Cape Town: is it a locally made product? A food or beverage they
associate with the Mother City, or an invention or company that was born here? A unique service,
event or adventure? The list of possibilities is endless!”
The initiative is going public ahead of the festive season to drive interest throughout the season and
beyond, with “Made in Cape Town” calling for public input via a variety of social media platforms,
namely Facebook (@MadeNCapeTown) and Instagram (madeincapetown).
“The ‘Made in Cape Town’ message amplifies the City of Cape Town’s own economic initiatives to
boost the economy out of the lockdown and galvanise both local businesses and supporters within all
Cape Town communities,” says Alderman James Vos, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for
Economic Opportunities and Asset Management.
“In just the past month, the City has launched a number of programmes to drive our economy. We
recently announced a 200-step Inclusive Economic Growth Strategy (IEGS) to make opportunities
more accessible for all who live in Cape Town and, in particular, create jobs,” says Alderman Vos
Other recent City of Cape Town initiatives have included detailed destination readiness plans which
highlight how the city is preparing to safely welcome visitors over the festive season. This ties into
Cape Town Tourism’s (CTT) new international “Find Your Freedom” campaign, which converts
potential travellers in key source markets to actual visitors to the Mother City, and CTT’s “Captivating
Cape Town” campaign showing the accessibility and affordability of Cape Town.
According to Alderman Vos, the key objective behind these numerous initiatives is to assist the
development of community tourism to support local businesses. He therefore believes that the
“Made in Cape Town” movement will support these initiatives, enabling local businesses to create
jobs and help to grow the economy.
“In partnership with the CDI, we are shining the spotlight on the many quality goods and services that
originate in the Mother City and encouraging both locals and visitors alike to come forward to say
what they love about Cape Town. This is an opportunity to endorse Cape Town as a destination and
to show our love for local by buying local.”
The first private sector entity to pledge its support for the “Made in Cape Town” movement is the
V&A Waterfront who, with the CDI, is currently implementing a Retail Readiness Living Lab (RRLL)
programme. Supporting small creative businesses in the Watershed, RRLL provides training and
mentorship to foster retail expertise and readiness as the economy reopens. Currently, craft
producers located at designer/artist Heath Nash’s “Our Workshop” at the Gugu S’Thebe Centre in
Langa are participating and benefitting from the opportunities being offered in the RRLL programme.
“All these speak to celebrating local products and services,” concludes Elk. “As the CDI, we are
excited by the ‘Made in Cape Town’ movement because it will help, support and promote South
African products and services – which is what we need to drive our recovery.”
ABOUT THE CRAFT AND DESIGN INSTITUTE (CDI)
The CDI is a craft and design sector development agency with a mission to develop capable people and build responsible
creative enterprises trading within local and international markets.
A non-profit company with over 20 years of success in developing creative people, small businesses and the craft and
design sector at large in South Africa, the CDI is a catalytic agent of change in the sector. It is passionate about developing
appropriately skilled, resourced and digitally proficient practitioners who can successfully leverage opportunities for
growth and development.
While partnering with other entities such as the City of Cape Town in the “Made in Cape Town” initiative for crosssectorial collaboration to stimulate economic growth, the CDI itself supports over 6 500 businesses and individuals in the
South African craft and design sector. Small businesses supported by the CDI range from start-ups to exporting
enterprises, and are based all over South Africa – from rural towns to urban centres. Its services help these businesses
develop the right product/service for the right market using appropriate business and production systems; and facilitates
national and international market opportunities to help them grow.
For more info on the “Made in Cape Town” movement and/or to interview Erica Elk, contact:
Carola Koblitz, Campaign Lead, “Made in Cape Town”
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org • WhatsApp or leave a message: 082 568 1621