Business skills-building is often overlooked in media development yet is vital if independent media are to maximize their impact in providing audiences with access to reliable news and information.
Building on three years of MDIF’s successful business capacity development program in Southeast Asia, the Southeast Asia Technical Assistance Initiative (SEATAI), MDIF is expanding its geographic reach to include Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The expanded program is now renamed Amplify Asia to better capture its extended reach and align it with MDIF’s growing range of regional Amplify programs.
As in Southeast Asia, independent media in many countries in South Asia continue to operate in challenging political and economic environments. Threats to journalists, media outlets and press freedom are widespread in the region. At the same time, growing media concentration and a fast-changing business environment, coupled with the lingering impact of Covid-19, create further challenges for independent media everywhere. The imperative to harness the potential for financial sustainability is more critical than ever.
Amplify Asia matches the specific business development needs of each of its media partners with the knowledge and skills of a senior regional media executive who acts as their coach. These coaches are tasked with advising on company strategy and designing capacity-building plans tailored to the media's individual needs. In addition, Amplify Asia media partners have access to regional specialists who can provide short-term technical assistance in areas such as website redesign, SEO services, sales and marketing training, etc. There are also small grants and a seed equity investment facility for those participating media that meet program criteria.