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«This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission ...»

-- [ Page 1 ] --

Holistic Marketing

for Micro-enterprises

in the Handicraft Sector



Project no. LLP-LDV-TOI-03/12

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.

This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use

which may be made of the information contained therein.

Holistic Marketing for Micro-enterprises

in the Handicraft Sector


Table of Contents





2.1. General situation in handicraft sector for selected groups

2.2. Profession profile


3.1. General education

3.2. Marketing education

3.3. Entrepreneurship skills

3.4. Brief description of existing institutes which offer education for selected groups

3.5. List of literature or web links linked to the topic


4. 1. Own company

4.2. Cooperations/Partnering, Market Associations

4.3. B2B (Supply – subcontractors for other companies)

4.4. Fairs

4.5. From the studio or workshop

4.6. Galleries (on consignment)

4.7. Occasional sales (Christmas markets, events, seasonal tourism)

4.8. Client/customer sales (e.g. Tupperware)

4.9. Online

4.10. Special forms of sale (e.g. Art supermarkets …)






1.1. Overview

1.2. Challenges

1.3. The selection for the MicroCraft project


2.1. Metal - Metal designer

2.2. Health care and beauty culture

2.3. Wood

2.4. Stone

2.5. Glas, flowers, potters (ceramic designer)

2.6. Clothes and textiles

2.6. Leather

2.7. Arts and Crafts




–  –  –


1.1. National Framework of Crafts

1.2 Standardization and Update

1.3 The definition of the Standard Craft Professions

1.4. The current situation in the field of crafts

1.5. Support of crafts by government, non-profit and commercial organizations


2.1- Methods and target groups

2.2. Results


–  –  –

Introduction In the European Union, small and medium sized enterprises (SME) employ more than two thirds of the work force, and contribute more than 60 to the gross national product. Within this group, the largest proportion are the socalled micro-enterprises that employ less than 10 persons. In arts and handicrafts, micro-enterprises count for more than 90 percent of all enterprises and consitute an important segment of the identity and visibility of the country’s economic identity.

However, many micro-enterprises are facing problems how to present and penetrate the market or how to promote the products. Especially in the handicraft sector, owners of micro-enterprises often did not have opportunities to acquire knowledge in the fields of marketing, which would enable them to do better business.

Our mission is to empower micro-enterprises in the handicraft sector to remain and strengthen teir function as a lever for social and territorial cohesion, with positive spillover effects on the rest of the economy and on society as a whole. Sector Arts and Crafts is facing a lack of marketing knowledge. Our task is to upgrade their expertise knowledge of sales and marketing. With this we support the implementation of the Programme for new skills and jobs.

The project will enhance cooperation in vocational education and working environment - in this case the sectors of arts and crafts. Identifying needs for skills and competences in each sector must be integrated into the implementation of vocational education and training. It concerns a sectoral transfer by modifying a successfully introduced self-learning concept and learning materials that were originally developed for woman farmers into a self-learning course materials for micro-enterprises in the arts and handicraft sector.

The partnership comprises three development partners from the development team of the previous project from Slovenia, Austria and the Czech Republic, and in order to guarantee the sustainability of this project,one additional expert partner in each of these countries, among them the Chamber of Craft of Slovenia and of the Czech Republic.

The objective of this Country Analysis was to update the investigation that had been made in the preparation of the project proposal, to provide the framework for the subsequent adaptation and customisation activities of the learning materials, and to inform stakeholders about the project activities already at the beginning of the project in order to create a basis for exploitation and dissemination.

–  –  –

Part A – Slovenia

1. General situation in Slovenia Nowadays domestic arts and crafts, or handicrafts, represent an important segment of identity and distinctiveness of individual countries and nations all over Europe and elsewhere. In this field, it is not only about keeping an activity or a craft alive. The better developed economies tend to devote adequate stimulation to domestic arts and crafts, with which they ensure that this segment of national creativity has properly developed into a profitable economic branch. Although Slovenia is on the bottom end of European scales in almost all areas of fostering domestic arts and crafts, it did achieve a few important things the other world can envy. This applies, for example, to a well organized system of peer evaluation (evaluation of handicraft products), which also brings the producers certain advantages when registering their activities and labelling their quality products with a label.

Care for the development of individual handicraft branches in our territory originates in 1492, when the German Emperor Frederick III. issued a patent, which was valid for that time`s Carniola and defined the dimensions of producing domestic wood crafts (woodenware) and some other domestic products. Producers were given the right to make and sell their handicraft products.

th The systematic social care regarding the existence of handicrafts emerged in the second half of the 18 century, th continued into the 19 century and later on. The time after the Second World War was unfavourable for craftsmen, but despite that, in 1946, a national sales institute for domestic crafts “Državni prodajni zavod za domačo obrt” was established in Ljubljana. Later it was renamed to trading company “Dom”.

The handicraft activities were also developed in different cooperatives or unions, but without the foundations, such as expert planning, documentation, education, knowing the traditions … Above all, there was no transfer of knowledge to young generations. Thus, numerous handicraft branches started to wane or were only kept alive by rare individuals. Those who benefited from the handicrafts the most contributed the least to the continuation of the handicraft development – for the state the handicraft products were only a kind of a representation “service”, and not one of the areas of the national economy, which needs special attention.

A new era for the post-war handicraft development is represented by the establishment of the Slovenia`s craftsmen association “Združenje obrtnikov Slovenije” in 1969, and the committee for domestic arts and crafts “Odbor za domačo in umetnostno obrt”, which organized the first exhibition of Slovenian domestic arts and crafts in 1977 in Slovenj Gradec. Since then the exhibition has been a biennial tradition. The committee continued its work first within the alliance of crafts associations “Zveza obrtnih združenj” and later in the Chamber of Craft and Small Business of Slovenia (Obrtna zbornica Slovenije – OZS). In the 1998 the committee renamed itself into a section for domestic arts and crafts at the Chamber of Craft and Small Business on Slovenia, which consists of representatives of some handicraft fields.

In the act for crafts “Obrtni zakon” the activities of domestic arts and crafts (handicrafts) are regulated in a separated chapter, because comparing to other crafts, different conditions apply for obtaining the right to perform the handicraft activities. The law defines the handicrafts as activities which are characterized with simple methods of work (mainly manual work) and art and design creating. Another special feature is also that the means of performing the handicraft activity are linked to the production of a specific product (and not the activity!), for which an expert opinion (a certificate) from the expert committee for domestic arts and crafts “Strokovna komisija za domačo in umetnostno obrt”, defining whether the product belongs within the domestic arts and crafts, is issued.

It must be noted, that the certificate, which is a prerequsite for obtaining a business licence, is not issued for a type of activity, but for every specific product, which means that the craftsman, who has a registered handicraft business, makes only the products, for which he or she gained the certificate for from the expert committee. This

–  –  –

kind of solution enables the craftsmen, who are in this business by themselves, to obtain a business licence in the easiest possible way and, at the same time, oblige them to lead financial and business records in accordance with the regulations.

In Slovenia, evaluation of domestic arts and crafts products began in 1977 at the first Slovenian handicraft exhibition in Slovenj Gradec. Since then and by the end of 2012 the committee considered applications from 7620 individual craftsmen and graded more than 55.000 individual products. A favourable opinion, namely the certificate, was given to 3411 craftsmen, who work in one of 45 activities belonging to the domestic arts and crafts sector.

Given the high number of craftsmen who were awarded a certificate for their products, the number of registered craftsmen, that is, those who are professionally engaged in this activitiy, is quite low: the Chamber of Craft and Small Businesses of Slovenia keeps a crafts register “Obrtni register” that includes data from 62 regional chambers of craft and small business, which geographically correspond with the areas of municipalities. According to the data from the craft register, in 2002 there were still 577 registered craftsmen with the handicraft business and in 2012 there were only 338. If we compare this with the number of all craft businesses in Slovenia, we find that handicrafts take up only 1%. Moreover, most of the registered craftsmen from the handicrafts do not have employees, 14 of them have 1 to 3 employees, 6 of them employ 4 to 5 people, one has 6 to 10 employees and one has 10 to 25 employees. Thus it can be seen that in handicrafts it is mostly about self-employment, as there are (besides the self-employer) only 69 employees working in the domestic arts and crafts sector, namely in 13 companies. Low numbers of registered craftsmen in the handicraft sector, thus those who professionally work in the domestic arts and crafts sector and possess certain handicraft skills and knowledge, also indicates that their status is still not adequately regulated.

–  –  –

2. Handicrafts in Slovenia

2.1. General situation in handicraft sector for selected groups Within the Chamber of Craft and Small Businesses of Slovenia and with public authority, an expert commission for evaluating domestic arts and crafts products “Strokovna komisija za vrednotenje izdelkov domače in umetnostne obrti” is operating. It consists of the chamber`s external associate experts. With the establishement of the committee in the 1980s it was the first time there was a systematic expert work in this area organized, and based on the commission evaluation the craftsmen from the handicraft secor were given the title “mojster” (“master”) or “mojstrska delavnica” (“master workshop”). Their products were labelled with “znak kakovosti” (“quality mark”).

The commission`s opinion was also the basis for tax deduction, which still represents one of the most direct forms of social incentives of the craftsmen in the handicraft sector. This can be seen as a first concrete stimulation for the producers of quality products in the post-war period. In this respect an agreement regarding fostering the development of domestic arts and crafts “Družbeni dogovor o pospeševanju razvoja domače in umetnostne obrti” was agreed in 1985. In the 1970s and 1980s the Slovenian handicrafts started to successfully represent its creativity and Slovenian national identity abroad along with it. All products with the consent of the commission had to and still must carry a label with the number of the certificate. Because of the thoroughness and professionalism of the criteria, the Slovenia`s system has been a point of interest in many European countries.

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