Matthew Buckland Wiki
Matthew Buckland (22 August 1974 – 23 April 2019) was a South African Internet entrepreneur and businessman who founded and exited digital agency and publisher Creative Spark, acquired in 2015 by UK firm M&C Saatchi PLC (LSE: SAA), the holding group of M&C Saatchi. Buckland was also the founder of Burn Media, a suite of technology publishing brands which includes Memeburn, Ventureburn.com, Gearburn.com and others.
Buckland previously headed the online division of the Mail & Guardian, thereafter he started 20fourlabs at Naspers’ news24.com, the largest South African online news publisher, owned by Naspers. While at the Mail & Guardian Buckland founded Thought Leader.
In 2015 he was selected as a “Master of Digital”, sitting down with actor Idris Elba for a “Q&A Session”.
Buckland lived in Cape Town with his wife and two daughters.
Buckland studied journalism at Rhodes University in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. He worked in London for the BBC’s then-commercial web arm, beeb.com as a developer, and then a web development producer. He then later worked as the Internet editor for prime-time TV show, Carte Blanche, before becoming Managing Director of Mail & Guardian’s online division. He was the eldest son of Andrew Buckland and Janet Buckland, a prominent South African acting family.
In 2010 Buckland founded Creative Spark and Burn Media, which he funded himself after being unable to raise venture capital for it Five years later, in 2015, he sold a majority share in his company to the FTSE-listed agency, M&C Saatchi. The deal included the sale of both the digital agency and the publishing arm, which owns titles such as Memeburn and Ventureburn. He later retook control of the publishing arm when exiting his former company in 2018. Ventureburn is a site that reports on the startup, entrepreneur and investor ecosystems in South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria.
He was the Master of Ceremonies at the Silicon Cape Initiative launch event and was elected to its inaugural board. The Silicon Cape Initiative is a South African-based organization which aims to turn the Western Cape into a high-tech startup hub. Buckland credits this organisation for inspiring him to move out of the corporate world into entrepreneurship.
In 2012 Buckland was recognized in the Power of 40: 40 Entrepreneurs Under 40 “Doing Interesting Things”
In 2013 and 2014 he was a member of the Cape Town chapter of Entrepreneurs Organisation.
Digital news entrepreneur Matthew Buckland has died at age 45. Buckland was formerly the head of the Mail & Guardian’s online division from 2000 to 2007 where he founded award-winning collaborative news and opinion platform, Thought Leader while establishing the M&G’s digital businesses. Buckland had taken over the M&G’s digital division from Irwin Manoim who launched the M&G’s digital presence in 1994.
It was Buckland however who would go on to convert the M&G Online as one of the continent’s leading news websites.
Matthew Buckland taught me to tweet and to blog on the brilliant ThoughtLeader platform. And he taught me, gently, that we could not kill the Internet when I was a nervous print editor faced with the Great Disruption. What a life! #RIPMatthewBuckland
— Ferial Haffajee (@ferialhaffajee) April 23, 2019
10 Fact You Need to Know About Matthew Buckland
- Selected in Fast Company Magazine’s Most Creative People in Business, 2015
- Selected as an “Oude Meeste Master of digital”, sitting down for an onscreen discussion with well-known actor Idris Elba, 2015
- Startup judge/Dragon at Social Media Week: Johannesburg
- NextWeb Startup World – Cape Town – Startup Judge
- Standard Bank Sikuvile journalism awards – Judge
- Listed in Destiny Magazine: Power of 40: 40 entrepreneurs under 40 doing interesting things
- Selected for the Old Mutual “Do Great Things” Entrepreneur guide
- Afridoctor app wins Nokia’s Africa-wide innovators competition (Prize of US$80 000)
- Named in top 100 of “South Africa’s most influential media and advertising people” by The Annual
- Named as one of “300 Young South Africans you should take out to lunch” by the Mail & Guardian Newspaper
- Named an upcoming New Media “Mogul” by FHM magazine & nominated for the 2009 Men’s Health “Best Man” awards