Budgeting and Financing

Budgeting your event
Finding sponsors
grant application

Budgeting Your Event

Being a WAK event means you’ll be receiving support in terms of venue, promotion, and some other forms of support, as listed in your relevant Collaborator Tier. However, there are many other expenses that you need to account for and those fall under your purview. Expecting to cover your cost from ticket sales is a risky business, as expenses are likely greater than your revenue. However, there are some ways that you can fund your shows other than through ticket sales alone.
Typical Expenses
Typical expenses for a WAK show include:
  • Production cost: Any equipment hire and transport that exceeds what is provided by WAK.
  • Accommodation: WAK provides sponsorship for limited pax staying at a participating hotel or hostel for a limited number of nights. Anything beyond that is on your own expenses.
  • Travel: Getting to and from Kuching and travelling around within the city.
  • Living Costs: Food and drink around the city are relatively affordable.
  • Contingency: Allow for an extra 5-10% of your total budget in case something unexpected happens.
Ways to Raise Money
Most arts projects require subsidy or spend some time in development so that organisers can accumulate enough funding to get it off the ground. Raising money is always a challenge. Here are some places where you can start:
  • Approach businesses and organisations for sponsorship
  • Your local council or relevant local ministry may have grants available for creative arts
  • Seek private donations from friends and family
  • Crowdfunding
  • Sell merchandise
  • Hold ticketed mini-events or fundraisers

Finding Sponsors

Businesses do support the arts, either as a way of giving back to the community or to associate their brand with an interesting creative project. They may be able to offer support in cash or in-kind, such as venue, rehearsal spaces, or services. Here are some tips to get you started on finding one:
  • Do your research: Look up similar events to find out who their sponsors are. While these same businesses might be open to hearing you out, build a list of similar companies to approach.
  • Consider their point of view: Why would these companies sponsor you? What’s in it for them? Does your event align with their core values? Businesses will usually ask to be acknowledged as sponsors in your marketing material, but this shouldn’t be the only thing you can offer them.
  • Initiate contact: Find out who is the right person to speak to and how to approach the business with your application. Would they prefer a quick pitch over coffee before you proceed with paperwork? Do they want the full proposal right away?
  • Write a clear proposal: Write a summary of your show, and outline of how it would benefit the sponsor, the kind of support you are seeking and a timeline. Include some strong supporting material, especially if you are an emerging artist or organisation. References or support statements from more established contacts in your network/industry are also helpful.

Grant Application

There are various grants available in Malaysia. Each has different aims, requirements and application periods. You need to do your research and understand what a particular organisation is funding. You need to make sure your creative project is the right fit, and that you can fulfil the conditions they have laid out.

Please note that you should apply for grants as early as the year before you intend to run your project. The consideration process can take months and could involve you going in for a round of pitching if you get shortlisted.

Applicants are encouraged to seek funding or grants from more than one source as you may not always get the full amount you requested from a single organisation.

Here are some links to get you started: