“How do you make your money” is more-or-less the first question people ask us, after we’ve described this project to them. 

So, here’s a breakdown of exactly where our money comes from, and what we spend it on.

 

HOW WE DO (AND DON’T) MAKE MONEY

No Commission on tips for Busk.co

The Busking Project does NOT take a commission on tips processed through our website or apps. We make no money if you make money on tips (although we do take a small commission if you sell music on our site).

Bank fees

It’s important to note, however, that 2-8% of your tips will go towards bank fees – to the online banking services that make the transactions safe and secure. That money does not go to us.

Events

We also do NOT charge a commission or a fee, for either street performers or for the people hiring them. However, we do ask that both clients and buskers give us a voluntary donation if the event is successful.

Websites

We create websites for clients and outdoor arts festivals that may or may not include street performers (like this one). The technology for those websites is based on what we’ve built here – but tailored for brands, festivals and so on.

Grants

In 2015 we won a £50,000 Nominet Trust grant to develop our app. We are now searching for more grants (since transforming our company to a Community Interest Company) to help promote street performers in more cities.

 

HOW WE SPEND OUR MONEY

Staff

90% of our money goes towards paying staff here in Colombia; developers, a “busker hunter” (who books buskers for events), an editor and our founder, Liliana Maz. We also pay freelancers when projects come up.

Office Space

We have a room in an office in Bogotá, which we rent for roughly £500 ($750), depending on the exchange rate. Lily, Camila, Jansen, Santiago and Nick share the space, doing a basic 9-5, staring at our computers every day.

Accountant

Our wonderful accountant, Tasnim Mustafa, who does our books and helped us get £40,000 in a “research and development” grant – way, way more than we’ve ever paid him over the years. If you’re in the UK, you can hire him here:  barnesandscott.com

Web Services

Slack, Google Apps, hosting of all our content, renting our domains, our “task management” software, Pivotal Tracker, our automatic email app, Mailchimp, and all the other things we use to make the site function. It’s complicated doing what we do!

Tidbits

We sometimes have to buy things like computers (when they die), and we pay for the odd Facebook Ad when we’re testing out new ideas. But, generally these costs are minimal. There are only a few of us, and we have what we need.


THE BOTTOM LINE

We pay no dividends to investors

We’re not making a profit as a company

Our board members are volunteers

Our team is small

Nobody’s making a fortune off this.

And most importantly – we don’t charge buskers to use the service. All your money? That’s all yours.