The African Tech Media space has lost one of its brightest as Matthew Buckland, founder of South African Media Company, Burn Media Group (owners of Memeburn, Ventureburn and Gearburn.com.) has died. His demise was announced by Ventureburn, yesterday.
Matthew founded Burn Media Group in 2010 where he was affectionately known as Matt in the news and boardroom. Prior to that, he had a career stint in South Africa’s print and online media industry that saw him work at the BBC, Mail & Guardian and News24 before starting his own digital agency Creative Spark, which he sold to UK-listed firm M&C Saatchi PLC 5 years later.
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 worked as the Internet Editor for the prime-time TV show, Carte Blanche, before becoming Managing Director of Mail & Guardian’s online division.
Matthew Buckland headed the online division of Mail & Guardian, where he founded Thought Leader, and later started innovation hub 20FourLabs while at 24.com. Buckland studied journalism at Rhodes University in the Eastern Cape, South Africa.
Speaking on the development, Burn Media director, Cobus Heyl expressed deep sadness Buckland’s death. According to him, “Matt’s passing is a deep shock to us all. We have not only lost our founder, but also a friend.”
“True to form he also put in place the building blocks for the business to continue, not least with a strong and dedicated team driving the business forward. Matt’s legacy will live on in BMG. Last but not least we think of Bridget, the kids and wider family at this time. They were Matt’s life. Our hearts are with them.”
The announcement has been greeted by a number of comments on Twitter by his friends and well-wishers:
Buckland (born on 22 August 1974) is survived by his wife and two daughters. Funeral arrangements will be announced.
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