The Business Development Programme was established in 2010 in in partnership with the TIA and the Swiss Leading House being the Universtiy of Basel.
The programme is implemented annually over three phases: Phase I is the basic course and fully funded by the TIA; this is followed by Phase II, the advanced course, with costs shared between the Swiss Leading House and TIA; and, lastly, Phase III, is the Swiss Summer School hosted in Switzerland. The costs of Phase III are also shared by TIA and the Swiss Leading House. The SSABDP contributes to TIA’s objectives of the NextGen 100 Programme, which aims to encourage the establishment of technology start-ups. Beyond the SSABDP are initiatives such as the Innovation Challenges and the Swiss Academia Industry Training Programme. Key to the Swiss-South Africa science to market outlook is the innovation stemming from the joint research projects.It is a framework that provides motivation, entrepreneurial know-how and support to scientists while strengthening links and cooperation between the industries ofSouth Africa and Switzerland.
Since 2010, the SSABDP has trained 931 entrepreneurs in South Africa of whom 172 participated in the SA Advanced Workshop and 85 participated in the Swiss-South Africa Venture LeadersProgramme.