about me

Matthew Buckland is an internet entrepreneur and investor with more than 20 years’ experience working in management and strategic roles for internet and technology businesses. He founded the digital marketing and strategy agency Creative Spark which he sold, five years after he founded it, to UK-listed firm M&C Saatchi.

After about eight years, Matthew exited his company, taking a division of it, Burn Media, with him. He currently runs the Burn Media Group — a grouping of publishing brands which report on technology, innovation and startups, called Memeburn.com, Ventureburn.com, Gearburn.com and others. He is also an investor in internet startup businesses.

Matthew is EIR to the Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF), a New York and Prague-based global media fund, helping its investees with strategy and business models in a range of countries. The MDIF has invested more than $166-million in over 114 independent businesses in 39 countries.

Before entrepreneurship, his corporate work included heading the online division of the Mail & Guardian, founding the award-winning 20FourLabs at $100bn-internet multinational Naspers. He also worked at the BBC’s digital arm in London as a developer and web producer.

Matthew was a founding member of the local digital industry body, Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), a member of EO (Entrepreneurs Organisation) and currently serves as an Endeavor Selector, an international entrepreneur body seeking to accelerate high-impact entrepreneurs. He was also a founding committee member of Silicon Cape, an entity that fosters startup growth in South Africa.

Matthew has a BA degree (History, Philosophy and Journalism) from Rhodes University. He has completed a Harvard Executive Education Course while at Naspers and a Singularity University Executive course in San Francisco. He has spoken about digital issues and strategies all over the world including New York, Berlin, London, Ireland, Amsterdam and Kenya.

Matthew received the annual “Best Contribution to Digital Award” by the digital industry body for work done in the digital marketing and media industry. He was selected as a “Shapeshifter” on 702/Cape Talk’s Bruce Whitfield show and in the same year was selected as one of Fast Company SA Magazine’s “Most Creative People in Business”. Destiny Magazine listed him in the “Power of 40: 40 entrepreneurs under 40 doing interesting things”. The Mail & Guardian listed him as one of “300 Young South Africans you should take to lunch” and the Annual magazine listed him as one of “SA’s top 100 most influential media and advertising people”.

He was proud to speak with Craig from Craigslist at Goldman Sachs in NYC and Jimmy Wales of Wikipedia in Johannesburg. He was also selected as a “Master of Digital”, sitting down with actor Idris Elba for a Q&A Session in Cape Town.

Matthew lives in Cape Town with his wife and two daughters, and is a passionate mountain biker!