In February of this year the Acceleration Event of the Velocidad Fund was held in Bogota (Colombia), starting the project’s Phase 1.
The event lasted two days, in which Velocidad’s 10 winning media outlets –Cerosetenta, Ciper, Convoca, El Pitazo, El Surtidor, El Toque, Lado B, Ponte, Posta and RedAcción – had the opportunity of meeting, getting to know the strategic consultants that will accompany them throughout the process, and exchanging their impressions and experiences with other colleagues. The time they shared together allowed them to hold sessions of collaborative work, learn the work calendar of the next six months and participate in training sessions focused on different topics.
The agenda covered the following topics: definition and measurement of the program’s impacts and sources diversification with tender and funding models.
“With this program we will be able to make our project sustainable and the stories we’ll tell will reach a broader audience,” said Fausto Salvadori Filho, founder of Brazil’s Ponte Jornalismo. On the other hand, Luciano Banchero, cofounder of Posta, added: “We believe that this represents more freedom, more independence, and Velocidad’s support for that is key.”
Founders and directors of each of the winning outlets participated in the event, and expressed their vision for Velocidad. “I think that what’s important about having independent digital media outlets in Latin America is that the region is finally being recognized for its own value,” said Jazmín Rocío Acuña Cantero, leader of El Surti.
Likewise, RedAcción’s Agustina Campos Sundbland stated: “For the media outlet to be sustainable there has to be a balance between journalism and industry.”
During the event, all the outlets accessed an exclusive presentation of Chartbeat, the platform that the fund provides to the winners that makes it easier to access the metrics regarding their digital outlets’ efficiency, which will allow them to make strategic decisions to improve their performance.
“This is a key moment for our project. To meet each of the representatives of the winning outlets and connect them with the consultants is very important, so that they are on the same page for the processes that will follow,” said Vanina Berghella, Director of Velocidad.
Since April, the winners have been in the middle of the acceleration process, implementing a comprehensive action plan that involves investment through funding, a team of strategic consultants that provide support and will follow each step of the process, and the counsel of tactical specialized consultants in different areas, according to the specific needs and interests of the media outlets.