Success Guide to Lettings

It’s not always easy for community businesses to get their hands on the kind of detailed financial data that helps build a business case, and get an important local service up and running. Unlike businesses in the private sector, local groups often only have minimal access to information, advice and inaccurate financial data on income generation to support their planning and goal setting. Read the full article…

Are you sweating your assets?

Asset Management Guide Culture Hive

One of the truisms about comedy around, well, almost anything really is that it must be based in fact.  Buzzwords, and phrases that use them – like sweating your assets – really do come from a place of business sense;  and not just the sensible play of buzzword-bingo in the hour-too-long management meeting after lunch on Read the full article…

GDPR Week at MyCake

At MyCake we take data seriously. In fact it’s our core business, and so the General Dataprotection Regulations (#gdpr) which come into force on 25th May are something we’re really interested in. And thought you might be too. There’s lots of information out there, but because it’s about data, it’s going to be a bit, Read the full article…

Be nice to your space!

Community Guide to Room Hire;  Power to Change / MyCake

Have you got space in your community centre?   Do you use it all?  Or is there a room at the back, maybe a little damp (’cause you don’t keep the heater on) that’s sitting there, lonely, with no one to play in it? Just a little sad round the edges, and slighly neglected with perhaps Read the full article…

Where are you with managing your money? Our survey says…

Back in the autumn we circulated a small survey to a number of community businesses to find out how they managed their money – in some cases, literally.   Our results are quite interesting from the small data cohort we used: Managing and keeping track of money is one of those things that we all MEAN Read the full article…

Blast Theory – Part 1 – Interview with Matt Adams


We visited Matt Adams of Blast Theory at their HQ in Portslade, UK to catch up on where the arts organisation is currently at with their business model and to ask what have been some of the interesting challenges on the way to success. Here is Matt telling us a bit about their experiments with Read the full article…

PopUp Summit 2014


On Friday 26 September, PopUp Britain will host a day-long event in central London featuring inspiring talks and panel discussions from retail, property and popup experts on the UK’s growing popup economy. It’s for anyone who wants to know more about the fast-paced world of popup retail from those at the industry’s forefront. Learn how Read the full article…

From studio to pop up gallery: Sarah meets artist Kellie Miller as she ventures into retail


In January Lauren and Sarah met with artist Kellie Miller at her new pop up gallery in Brighton’s Lanes. Kellie kindly let us film a series of short ‘top tips’ videos in the beautifully presented Kellie Miller Arts gallery space, the videos will form part of the work we are doing this May with Yorkshire Read the full article…

Retailing – a greater focus on SME’s?


In the last couple of weeks we’ve taken to our rubber duck, floated across the moat that currently surrounds MyCake Towers and headed out to explore some of the new retail opportunities that you, our MyCake community, have been using to reach new markets. This article looks at two in particular – the Princes Trust Read the full article…

Culture Benchmark Workshop: setting the baseline against which to compare progress of your Catalyst activities

The purpose of this half day workshop is to respond to the various enquiries that we have received about whether and how the data in the Culture Benchmark can be used to benchmark your current income generating activities against your peers. As you are probably aware the Culture Benchmark provides a mix of free and paid services to arts organisations to help them to use financial data to adapt their business model in response to the changes in arts funding. Benchmarking is something that works both at an individual organisational level and with clusters of organisations who have something in common.

In this afternoon event we will help you:

  • Structure your thinking about how you are leveraging both your tangible and intangible assets into new income streams
  • Work out what comparison groups would be most useful to you … by turnover range, geography, and by sector and types of activity
  • Understand how the data held in the Culture Benchmark can be used to set a baseline against which to compare your income development progress … not just as an organisation comparing progress against your own history but also by comparison to your peers and thus the ‘average’ and ‘best in class'
  • Work out what ‘best in class’ looks like for your type of organisation and mix of activities
  • Use benchmark data to set targets internally and communicate your successes to your stakeholders

The plan is that by the end of the session you will have:

  • Clarity on what comparisons are most useful to your organisation
  • Clarity on who to class as your peers within the context of this income development work
  • Thoughts on clusters of peers you might like to convene on an occasional basis to share experiences with
  • Understanding of how the Culture Benchmark could be used in your organisation (along with clarity on what’s available free vs. what is included in a subscription)

Event details: SOLD OUT**
Time: 2-5pm
Date: Wednesday 19 February 2014
Location: The Showroom, 63 Penfold St, London NW8

All recipients of ACE Catalyst funding are eligible to attend this free workshop but places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. To attend please book here on our eventbrite page

**please email to register your interest for a future seminar.

What is benchmarking anyway?
If the concept of benchmarking is new to you and you are wondering what it is and how it works you might find these free resources useful:


We are hosting a free half day workshop at the Showroom in London from 2-5pm on Wednesday February 19th for any (or all!) ACE Catalyst funded organisations to learn how to use benchmarking data to set a baseline against which to compare the progress of their Catalyst activities. Places are limited so please book here Read the full article…