Following the success of its first investment round, MDIF Ventures is investing in a new cohort of media projects located or serving audiences in countries where access to free and independent news and information is under threat.

MDIF Ventures offers equity investment to young and growing media companies with a positive social impact and potential to scale. The fund invests in countries where free and independent news and information is under threat, and exceptionally in global projects benefitting audiences in those countries.

“The investment evaluation process, albeit intense, is smooth, organized and very positive for the applying investee,” said Renata Rizzi, director of finance and strategy, and co-founder at Nexo, Brazil.

“It forces you to do some internal housekeeping, to analyze your business from a distance, and to project its future performance and strategy. You are treated with a lot of respect all the time, and issues that come up are dealt with in an extremely cooperative way.

“As the investment materializes, constructive and reasonable reporting takes place at regular intervals. A lot of support and technical assistance is provided. And it does make a difference. We feel very lucky to be in MDIF Ventures’ portfolio.”

A globally diversified impact

MDIF Ventures invests in media anywhere on the early-stage spectrum, from pre-seed (“friends and family” and angel rounds) through to participating in growth or Series A financing rounds.

Successful applicants range from digital news providers and newsletter creators to podcast production companies and innovators of data visualization tools and include:

The Current, Pakistan, News platform: A platform aimed at Pakistan’s millennials that covers news, entertainment and lifestyle.

Dataphyte, Nigeria, Data analytics: Media, research and data analytics company that has built a leading data journalism platform, multiple data-focused newsletters, an enterprise data merchandise platform and a data training academy platform.

Datasketch, Colombia, Data visualization: A technology startup that provides small organisations and individuals with access to data visualization tools and facilitates knowledge-sharing to promote informed debate.

The Morning Context, India, News platform: A research and media company that provides original, deeply researched and analytical long-form stories and curated newsletters with an India-specific, public interest lens.

MyNews, Brazil, Video: A media channel with programs on YouTube in various formats, including debates, interviews and columns, mainly on politics, economics and finance.

Nexo, Brazil, Video: Subscriber-focused media providing explanatory, contextualised news on subjects from politics to science to culture.

PumaPodcast, Philippines, Podcast production: A regional leader in podcasting and audio production, it delivers entertaining, engaging and compelling content that is anchored in the idea of empowering people with information.

The Republic, Nigeria, Digital magazine: Online magazine and platform centering on Nigeria and Africa and the world’s most critical social, political and economic issues.

Zitamar News, Mozambique, Investigative news: An English-language investigative news website and newsletter, which also produces audio news bulletins in several Mozambican languages to bring reliable news to under-served communities.

PumaPodcast, an award-winning independent podcast producer in the Philippines, received investment from MDIF Ventures in 2021, as well as strategic advice and support from MDIF’s Amplify Asia program.

Carl Javier, PumaPodcast CEO, attributes their success to this support. “It’s hard to imagine where PumaPodcast would be now without the support and partnership of MDIF Ventures. 

We aspire to be an impactful and sustainable media outfit, and MDIF Ventures has been invaluable in its guidance, and building a network of support that has given us a trajectory toward success.

The deadline for applications is December 10, 2023. Apply Here

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