Boosting Association Revenues

One of the risks facing many African associations is their dependence on membership revenues. The American Association of Association Executives (ASAE), which conducts annual studies of chamber and association executives, found that membership revenue has been declining over time and the cost of membership services is gradually increasing.

A recent CIPE survey of 93 associations across Africa from 2020 revealed that while over 40% of African Chambers and Associations’ revenues come through membership fees, they were also raising revenues from many other diverse sources. These sources, including trade shows, grants, and events, are providing major sources of funding. Diversification of revenues is one of the characteristics of a sustainable chamber or association, especially in this constantly evolving environment where associations need to remain nimble –  not only inventing new ways to raise revenues but providing desired products and services to members as well.

Because of the changing revenue ecosystem, CIPE recently released a new online tool that provides real life case-studies of African associations and chambers to inspire creative ways to raise revenues. The new tool showcases seven different categories of ways African associations are raising revenue: Affinity Programs, Consulting Services, Publications, Trade and Investment, Training and Professional Development, Business Support, and Events. Case studies provide written stories, videos, websites, and social media links as resources. The goal is to inspire Board of Directors and Association leadership to learn from their other African colleagues about good ideas that are proving successful.

CIPE will continue to share association resources as we work with over 230 African chambers and associations annually. We welcome opportunities to partner with new associations across Africa and throughout the world. Our aim is to build the number of case studies and interactive resources,  becoming the primary resource for leaders exploring new ways to raise association revenues. For that reason, we invite all African associations to submit their most successful examples of raising revenues from nontraditional sources. Tell us your association’s success story, or contact us for more information about our programs, by emailing us at

Published Date: August 04, 2023