Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS) is the national trade body for the Software & Enabled Service industry of Bangladesh. Established in 1998, the association has been working with a vision of developing vibrant software & IT service industry in the country. BASIS started its journey with only 18 charter members. Today the membership stands at more than eighteen hundred. Members of BASIS account for the lion's share of the total software & IT services revenue of the country. BASIS, through its regular programs and activities, works on the following broad objectives:
- Domestic market development by creating awareness among potential IT users from both private and public sectors
- Establishing marketplaces for IT solutions and ensuring a level playing field for the local software and ITE service industry
- International market development through networking and business linkage events as well as brand promotion of the industry at the international level
- Capacity building of the member companies as well as the industry as a whole through management/entrepreneurship development initiatives
- Technology training and resource sharing
- Member service development and delivery in different operational and business support areas like financing, tax, export/import, remittance, foreign visit, contract & legal issues, IPR, etc.
- Advocacy for business-friendly and enabling government policies for the development of software and IT-enabled service industry
- Social contribution, as a responsible citizen group, towards the long-term national vision of becoming a technology-driven knowledge economy, particularly through engaging with the young generation for motivating and guiding them for becoming future technology leaders.
BASIS has already gained modest success in attaining the above-mentioned goals. For domestic market creation, BASIS has a wide range of programs and activities. Every year BASIS organizes BASIS SOFTEXPO, the biggest software and ITES exposition in the country. In recent years, SOFTEXPO has become the yearly mega marketplace where software & IT service companies in the country project their products and services to potential IT users, both at corporate/organizational and individual levels. BASIS periodically publishes software and IT service catalog /directory for promoting local solution providers to potential business clients. For the development of the market in the government sector BASIS has been working closely with different concerned Ministries and agencies of government.
BASIS is trying to play a catalyst role so that its members can effectively provide support and technical guidance to different government initiatives taken in line with the Digital Bangladesh vision of the current government. Along with these initiatives of market development, BASIS also provides IT procurement advisory services to both public and private sector clients. With regard to export market development, BASIS regularly takes initiatives for creating exposure for member companies to international markets with the help of different government and development agencies working in the export development area. Such initiatives include -arranging participation at international IT fairs & marketing missions, business linkage programs for outsourcing, B2B trade platform, etc. There is a wide range of capacity-building support that BASIS offers to its members. These initiatives are aimed at helping the member companies to become competitive at local and international levels. These include training programs (technology and management; to date over two thousand professionals have received training from BASIS), promotion and sharing of best industry practices, quality drive across the industry, etc. In the recent past, BASIS has also taken steps for in-depth industry research and the development of white papers for providing strategic guidance to its members. With regard to policy advocacy for the sector, BASIS regularly interacts with concerned agencies of the Government and other relevant stakeholders. BASIS played an active role in the formulation of the National ICT policy 2018, Digital Commerce Policy 2018, etc.
BASIS has also strongly advocated for industry support-related policies and issues (tax exemption facility, EEF policy, Special Foreign Exchange rule for BASIS members, etc.) for the software and ITES industry. BASIS represents the industry in different national-level committees including the Digital Bangladesh Task Force (headed by PM), the High Tech Park Development Authority, and the Executive Committee of Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC).
Organizational Structure and Governance
BASIS Board: BASIS is run by a nine-member Board of Directors (elected by direct voting of the members for a two-year). The Board of Directors has the overall responsibility for running the affairs of BASIS and setting policy guidelines for its secretariat. Aside from the elected board of directors, there are 36 (Thirty-Six) Standing Committees, Focus Groups, and Forums comprising members who are experts in relevant areas.
BASIS has a strong secretariat. The secretariat is well-staffed to deliver different member services and to carry out programs & activities in different areas as specified within the broad goals of the association. Currently, the employee size of the BASIS Secretariat is 25.