The New York-based Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF), a non-profit investment fund that supports independent news outlets in countries with a history of media oppression, has announced that its subsidiary, MDIF Ventures, will invest another $1 million in young and growing media companies with a positive social impact and potential to scale.
MDIF said in a statement on April 28, 2023 that it was building on the success of MDIF Ventures’ first $1 million round of investments which began in 2021, announcing that the fund will again invest in projects located or serving audiences in countries where access to free and independent news and information is under threat.
According to the investment fund, MDIF Ventures’ first call resulted in applications from more than 200 independent media from dozens of countries where access to reliable news and information is challenged, out of which eight media organizations from seven countries went on to secure investment and venture support to help accelerate their business development.
Ms Majka Nemcova, MDIF Chief Operating Officer, said: “The quality of applications in the first call and the clear need for early-stage media financing have led us to announce another $1 million round of investment,” adding that “We’ve been inspired by the energy and ideas of young media professionals who are committed to building businesses centred on the principle of independent news and information using a wide range of platforms and tools. We are again looking for the next generation of mission-focused media entrepreneurs.”
MDIF has two decades of experience of investing in young digital media worldwide, including KataData in Indonesia); SEEN/Hashtag Our Stories in South Africa; Gram Vaani in India and Colab in Brazil. MDIF Ventures’ investees also include Dataphyte, a Nigerian media, research and data analytics company; a leading Philippine podcast producer PumaPodcast and; The Current, a Pakistan-based news platform.
It is inviting eligible media companies in the early-stage of the spectrum, from pre-seed (“friends and family” and angel rounds) through to participating in growth or Series A financing rounds, to apply for support.
According to MDIF, eligible media must have a commitment to public interest news and information, and ownership that is independent from governments and other political or economic interests. Projects by such media companies must also be located or serve an audience in countries where access to free and independent news and information is under threat.
Interested media companies can find full eligibility criteria or apply for support at:
MDIF is a not-for-profit investment fund based in New York in United States, which provides debt and equity financing supported by advisory services to independent media in countries where access to free and independent media is under threat. With more than $141 million assets under management, since 1996 MDIF has invested almost $300 million in 146 independent media businesses in 47 countries. Its investments help independent media around the world provide the news, information and debate that people need to build free, thriving societies.