Majority Ownership of Africa Media Online in the Hands of Not-for-Profit Organisations
We are excited to announce that during the course of 2015, 51% of the ownership of Africa Media Online passed into the hands of Not-for-Profit trusts set up for the benefit of formerly disadvantaged communities, which is very much in line with our overall vision to enable “Africans to tell Africa’s story.”
A 26% stake is now owned by Kabusha Youth Development NPC. The Trust has two beneficiaries.
- GOLD is an organisation which has a vision to see a generation of young African leaders confronting the root issues of both HIV and youth risk behaviour, through uplifting their communities and imparting vision and purpose to present and future generations. The organization is led by a personal friend of ours, Susannah Farr.
- St John’s College in Mthatha, the 135 year old high school that has produced many of South Africa’s leaders including former President Thabo Mbeki.
A 25% stake is now owned by the Africa Leadership School Trust set up to train emerging leaders in rural and periurban areas in KwaZulu-Natal, the Eastern Cape and further afield.
When we started Africa Media Online in 2000 we started a business… a business with social impact at its heart. We set it up as a business because we believed we could create something that could be self sustaining and not always require hand outs from others. At the same time, though, profit was not our primary objective. At the heart of the organisation was a desire to have a social impact. Enabling African’s to tell Africa’s story was our primary goal. We were wanting to be a part of changing the discourse about Africa by enabling African voices to be heard on a global stage. But further than that, we wanted to create jobs and nurture home grown experts here in Africa by being on the cutting edge of the digital revolution.
While we recognise we have a long way to go, this step, of having Not-for-Profits as majority shareholders in the company is a thrilling development. These are all organisations we have had relationship with as part of our personal involvement over the years in rural and peri-urban communities. Having them as partners helps to keep the social element at the heart of Africa Media Online in the midst of serving paying markets as any business must do. Practically it means more than 50% of any profits in Africa Media Online are given to benefit disadvantaged communities!