Nigeria Media Innovation Program (NAMIP) is a 3-year initiative working to increase capacity, generate sustainable and diverse revenue streams, and build audiences of independent media in Nigeria, particularly those reaching underserved communities. Launched in February 2022, it seeks to support the editorial independence of media organisations by strengthening their financial sustainability.
Nigeria Media Innovation Program
What is NAMIP?
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. 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.
Funded by MacArthur Foundation, NAMIP seeks to address these challenges by helping media to increase revenues, test new business models and instil financial discipline. It will also help participating media to build a robust community of partnership and collaboration.
NAMIP is designed to be more than a fund: resourcing is only one element of a broader set of interventions required to advance media sustainability. Through a combination of grants, coaching and tailored technical assistance, NAMIP seeks to increase the capacity of independent media, from early-stage outlets to established organisations, providing them with the tools they need to develop and continuously revise their models on the path to sustainability.
Interventions will include workshops and trainings, support from experts/consultants, community sharing and learning, and other bespoke assistance. NAMIP will provide the tools media need to experiment, so they can grow revenues and reach new audiences.
The program design incorporates learnings from MDIF’s successful South Africa Media Innovation Program (SAMIP) and Myanmar Media Program (MMP), as well as its work supporting the viability of independent media in Ethiopia under the PRIMED initiative.
Over a 3-year period, NAMIP will support up to 25 independent media, ranging from early-stage, small scale outlets to larger, more established players, serving both urban and rural audiences of mainstream and underserved populations.
Apply to join the program: Enter the NAMIP Innovation Challenge for Nigerian media
Applications are open for the first NAMIP Innovation Challenge for Nigerian media. Winners will be awarded up to $50,000 for their project and join NAMIP’s three-year innovation and capacity building program.
The Innovation Challenge is seeking applications from media organisations that are building innovative news and information products that:
- Explore opportunities to reach and connect with broader audiences through digital platforms and technologies; or
- Develop new revenue generation opportunities or sustainable business models?
Successful applicants will benefit from up to $50,000 for their project and have access to a range of capacity building activities, including mentorship and training, as well as joining NAMIP’s supportive community of like-minded organisations.
We encourage applications from existing independent media companies, non-profit media and new ventures who have projects that address one or more of the following focus areas:
Digital native products: New approaches to collecting news and information, and to reporting, storytelling and distribution, that embrace the possibilities of technology.
Reaching rural communities: Innovative approaches to reach that empower people outside of major urban areas and those generally underserved by existing news media.
Engaging people in official languages that are underserved: Attempts to engage and distribute content to communities in vernacular languages that are underserved.
Technology innovation for distribution: New media technology that distributes local news in a cost-effective and sustainable way.
New Revenue opportunities: Innovative solutions to revenue challenges that media companies face – how can we open up new revenue streams to make media organisations more sustainable and independent.
Transition to digital: Finding and implementing solutions, products or processes that assist legacy media to transform their businesses.
Who are we looking for?
- You could be an existing independent media company, a non-profit or a new venture that is just kicking off.
- We are looking for mission-driven companies and organisations passionate about trying new approaches to local news and information.
- We encourage applicants who don’t have traditional journalism and media backgrounds, particularly from the areas of technology, design and business.
The deadline for our initial funding cycle is midnight on May 31, 2022 (West Africa Time). Apply here.