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Photo: Jozef Jakubčo / SME

Track record

In 2021, we celebrated the 25th anniversary of MDIF’s first investment. In total, we have provided $270.1 million in financing, including $233.5 million in loans and equity investments, $36 million in technical assistance (TA) and TA grants.

Over a quarter of a century, we have invested in 138 independent media businesses across 45 countries. The largest share of our cumulative investments has been concentrated in Europe (77%).

Asham Ethiopia Africa Primed Digital Woman
Cumulative investments and countries where MDIF has provided financing1
Cumulative investments and countries where MDIF has provided financing 1 1% has been invested in “Other”, which covers outlets with global reach based in the Netherlands and USA

Annual performance

In 2021, MDIF finished the year with $147.5 million total assets under management and a portfolio of 56 media businesses in 32 countries. We invested a total of $34.8 million in 13 media companies, with 10 new clients joining our portfolio. We managed and carried out our investments through a structure that included eight private equity, debt and hybrid funds and other investment vehicles.

$147.5 milion
assets under management

56 media invested in
32 countries

$34.8 milion
of new investments

13 investments carried out,
including 10 new clients

Portfolio size, 2011-2021
Portfolio size, 2011-2021
Number of clients, 2011-2021
Number of clients, 2011-2021
Assets under management, 2017-2021
Assets under management, 2017-2021
New investments by fund, 2021
New investments by fund, 2021


From digital startups to national multiplatform broadcasters, we ended the year with investments in 56 independent media businesses of different sizes, types of activity and business models operating across different geographies spread across 32 countries, from Kosovo to Lesotho and from Peru to Malaysia.

Clients by target audience
Clients by target audience
Clients by geography
Clients by geography

Press freedom

56 out of 56 of MDIF clients operated in countries where the media environment is not good, according to Reporters Without Borders’ World Press Freedom Index2. Additionally, 44% of MDIF-supported media organisations included in our annual questionnaire reported experiencing attacks, arrests or harassment in the past year.

44% of clients reported
experiencing attacks, arrests or
harassment in the past year


100% of clients were
in countries where press freedom
is not good

2 43% were in countries categorised as ‘problematic’, 37% as ‘difficult’ and 20% as ‘satisfactory’

Clients’ staff

Last year, our investments supported the work of more than 5,798 journalists, publishers and other media workers. Average female participation stood at 47% among staff, 45.5% among management, and 42.5% among newsroom leadership.

5,798 media workers

Clients’ staff

47% average female
representation among
clients’ staff

Social Impact

MDIF-supported media continued making a difference in their communities, cities, regions and countries, reaching 331 million people with news and information. 82% of clients included in our annual survey reported that they created impact through journalism and information-sharing in 2021. Additionally, 78% reported receiving awards in 2021. We counted as many as 91 honours and accolades earned by our clients.


of MDIF clients reported receiving awards in 2021


people reached with news and information


of MDIF clients reported creating impact in 2021


honours and awards received in 2021

Beyond financing: advisory, venture support and initiatives

MDIF also delivers non-financial value and engages actively in its investments by providing business and management support and we broaden our impact by launching or partnering in media support projects. Last year, we delivered $3.5 million in tailored technical assistance and TA grants through Media Advisory Services (MAS), our capacity building unit, and through five media support projects, including in Southern Africa, Southeast Asia and Ethiopia.


in venture support
and TA grants


engaged through MAS,
our capacity building unit


strengthening media
beyond MDIF portfolio

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