The following serves as an abridged explanation of the meaning of the grades of membership:
Grade 0 = applies to members who have not attained sufficient qualifications or business advisory experience to be graded. This grade usually applies to students or other individuals who have an interest in the profession of “Business Advisor” but have not yet commenced practice. It could also refer to an individual who has failed to supply the necessary information for any grading to be applied.

Business Advisor (BA)

1. Beginner: applies to individuals who are new and/or inexperienced business advisors. It could also apply to someone who has not supplied the IBASA with sufficient information to warrant a higher grade.
2. Intermediate: applies to individuals who have some tertiary business-related qualification, but has had little (usually less than 3 years) experience.

Principal Business Advisor (PBA)

Advanced: applies to individuals with the appropriate requisite academic experience as well as considerable work as well as business advisory experience – usually at least 5 years.

Certified Business Advisor (CBA)

Expert: applies to individuals who have all of the attributes of Grade 3 above but with one or more of the following in addition: 10 years or more business advisory experience OR an expert recognized skill (e.g. Marketing, HR, IT, Finance, Legal) OR Extensive experience (4 or more) of “Business Turn-around” interventions (proof has to be supplied) OR with proven expertise in one of the sectors (Agriculture, Manufacturing, Retail, Service and Tourism).


an honorary grade conferred on an individual by the IBASA board in recognition of substantial contribution made to the SMME sector and/or Business Advisor profession.