Guardian Media Group announces £42m VC fund for next-gen media tech start-ups

GMG Ventures will consider investing in start-ups that create AI learning tools for journalism, ad tech, payment tech and new forms of content distribution

Guardian Media Group (GMG) has announced its launching a new £42m venture capital (VC) fund to invest in next-gen media tech start-ups.

The fund, called GMG Ventures, will invest in early stage businesses looking to disrupt aspects of the media industry.

GMG Ventures say it will consider investing in start-ups that are involved with the following:

  • Artificial intelligence and machine learning tools for journalism
  • Advertising technology, including new formats and fraud detection
  • Technology to enrich reader and customer experiences
  • Payment technologies and other customer platforms
  • Tools or platforms allowing readers to act on content that inspires them
  • New forms of content distribution, via audio and voice platforms or virtual, mixed and augmented reality models

The Guardian’s existing investment in Founders Factory will also be managed by GMG Ventures.

GMG's current chief executive David Pemsel will chair GMG Ventures, while Alan Hudson, who joined GMG as chief investment officer in 2011, will become managing partner of the fund.

David Pemsel, chief executive of GMG, said:

“In a rapidly changing media landscape, GMG Ventures will be an essential addition to the experience, skills and qualities of the Guardian, giving us access to the new ideas and innovation that entrepreneurs bring to the table.

“GMG Ventures will aim to secure investments in some of the very best new businesses emerging out of the media and tech space in the UK, US and Continental Europe.”

Alan Hudson, managing partner at GMG Ventures, said:

“GMG Ventures is uniquely positioned to be a value-add investor. The Guardian is well-placed to understand the rapid changes to the news sector and the investment opportunities that disruption presents.”