Indiegraf announces $1 million initiative help partner publishers achieve sustainability

Apply to Indie Capital for up to $50,000 in grant funding for growth.

VANCOUVER — Indiegraf is accepting expressions of interest for a new round of Indie Capital, a $1 million program for publishers committed to growing their audience and revenue on the path to long-term sustainability. Indie Capital will provide up to $50,000 in funding to help independent community news publishers grow and diversify their revenue.

“Since launching in 2020, Indiegraf has been focused on developing a proven pathway for small digital news outlets to achieve sustainability by filling local news gaps,” says Erin Millar, CEO and co-founder of Indiegraf. “Our publishers are making an impact and achieving strong revenue growth by providing high-quality community journalism. But most are not yet sustainable. We believe, with targeted funding and support, they will pioneer new pathways to sustainability for journalist-entrepreneurs.”

This initiative represents the expansion of Indie Capital, Indiegraf’s program to provide funding to small local news publishers that are pioneering new business models using the Indiegraf platform. Previous recipients of Indie Capital funds include Peterborough Currents, Palm Springs Post, Inside Waterloo, Cold Tea Collective, Bushwick Daily and others.

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Since its founding, Indiegraf has helped over 50 established and startup publishers across North America grow their audience and revenue. Using Indiegraf’s platform, publishers such as IndigiNews, Shasta Scout, The Breach and many more have attracted tens of thousands of email subscribers and generated hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue from readers.

These news organizations are part of a movement of small, independent publishers emerging to fill community news gaps. The number of independent local news outlets in North America has grown to 700 in the past five years, but only one in five consider themselves sustainable, according to the Project Oasis Report. The majority of independent publishers cited in the report bring in less than $100,000 per year and rely heavily on a single revenue source.  Most used personal savings for seed capital to get off the ground.

Publishers based in the United States and Canada are eligible to apply. Publishers that are not currently part of Indiegraf are invited to apply if they are interested in joining Indiegraf. Indiegraf is seeking independent publishers providing quality journalism to communities underserved by other media outlets, that have a track record of audience and revenue traction and equitable coverage. Special consideration will be given to news outlets owned or led by Black, Indigenous and people of colour journalists.

Read about the full program details, criteria and selection process here. If you are interested in learning more, contact Indiegraf’s publisher success manager Joe Lanane.

Submit an expression of interest by December 23. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to submit a full application before January 30.

This round of Indie Capital is made possible by the Meta Journalism Project and Indiegraf funders including New Media Ventures, Spring, Marigold Capital and others.

This new funding program is the latest investments Indiegraf is making in Indie Capital. In 2022, Indie Capital plans to roll out other funding opportunities for community news publishers across North America that are committed to providing equitable coverage in communities experiencing news poverty. If you’re not eligible for this first program, but you’d like to express your interest in future opportunities, sign up for Indie Publisher.

Media contact: H.G. Watson, [email protected]

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