The New Times (Kigali)

Rwanda to Launch First Digital Media Incubator Today

The Rwanda Media Hub, the first incubator for digital media and media production enterprises in East Africa, will today be launched by the Institute for War & Peace Reporting (IWPR).

The media incubator with $450,000 (about Rwf301m) in seed funding will support local media entrepreneurs with access to seed grants, office space and mentoring to help foster a vibrant media in the country.

The IWPR and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, provide seed funding of between $10,000 (Rwf6.6m) to $20,000 (Rwf13m) to 25 promising Rwandan enterprises, according to a statement.

"The grant will support a wide range of projects, from classic content production for audio-visual and print media, to cutting edge digital media companies, and businesses working with Rwandan culture and media in general," the statement reads in part.

"Applicants can be individuals, businesses, legal partnerships or consortia of organisations that already have an idea that can be developed," the statement adds.

It cited television programmes or series that can be marketed to regional and Rwandan television networks, online portal for specific interest groups such as doctors, lawyers and entrepreneurs and mobile applications that apply technology to solve daily problems such as real estate search or transport booking services among the eligible projects for financing.

Successful applicants will have demonstrated an existing interest in media and technology, a track record of producing creative content and a passion to succeed, the statement says.

The application period runs from April 4 through June 1.

Applicants will be supported by the Rwanda Media Hub throughout the application process through a series of workshops and access to the Rwanda Media Hub technologies and staff. All applications will be received online at www.rwandamediahub.com

Each of the 25 projects that are awarded funding will have to be completed latest February 15, 2015.

IWPR enhances the skills and capacity of journalists, strengthens media institutions and engages with civil society and governments to ensure that information achieves impact. The NGO was founded in 1991 under the name Yugofax.

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