The Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF) has announced HumAngle and 10 other organisations as the first set of participants in its Nigeria Media Innovation Program (NAMIP).
Selected from over 200 applications, the newsroom will benefit from the three-year initiative to help independent media organisations to increase their capacity, build their audience, as well as generate sustainable and diverse revenue streams.
The programme was launched in Feb. 2022 and is funded by the MacArthur Foundation. MDIF has organised similar programmes in South Africa and Myanmar to support local news outfits.
“In Nigeria, as in much of the developing world, independent media are struggling with unsustainable business models and grant-dependency, while audiences lack diversity of reliable news and information sources,” note the organisers.
“Without the capacity and financial means to experiment and innovate with business models and new products, many media are unable to develop new revenue streams and build audiences that are vital for their future. Covid-19 accelerated the crisis and compounded the challenges facing media.”
The programme will also focus on helping the participants build a robust community of partners and dedicated collaborators. The newsrooms will receive grants, coaching, capacity-building interventions, and technical assistance tailored to their niche.
Other recipients from Nigeria include Culture Custodian, Dubawa, Edugist, Farming Farmers Farm, Foundation for Investigative Journalism (FIJ), Lavun Community Radio, Prime Progress, Solacebase, TV 360, and Voix Collective.
MDIF says it plans to support a total of 25 organisations over the three-year period and will be opening applications for more newsrooms to apply in the coming months. It emphasises that the target beneficiaries are “mission-driven companies and organisations passionate about trying new approaches to local news and information”.
According to the group, the 11 organisations selected in the first batch meet these criteria as they are building innovative products, seeking means of reaching new audiences, and developing sustainable business models through new revenue streams.
“We look forward to assisting these organisations with finding the space and opportunity to innovate, so that they can grow their audiences and increase their revenue to become financially sustainable,” said Bilal Randeree, MDIF’s Program Director for Africa and MENA.
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