Saturday 22 October 2016

Little considering setting up new business ... and he wants it based in Dublin


Entrepreneur and former RTE journalist Mark Little has hinted he will set up his next business in Dublin.

He announced last week that he is leaving Storyful, the online news agency he founded, and said he has been like "a kid in a candy shop" while deciding on what his next project will be.

Little sold the company in a multi-million euro deal to media giants NewsCorp in 2013.

He left his position as CEO in December, and has now stepped down from being director of editorial innovation.

The former Prime Time host has said media industries are set to explode in Dublin.

"One of the options I'm thinking about is starting a new company, and I'll do it here. I'll be living in New York, but if I do decide to start up a new com- pany I'll be setting up in Ireland, because it's the best place to do it, if not in the world, certainly in Europe," he said.

"For example, for financial transactions Dublin is a real leader, and for media innovation Dublin is a real leader in that. The problem is once you have a business, how do you build one? And Ireland is not there yet.


"We've got very highly skilled people here in Dublin. We're starting to see people from Google and Facebook being hired by start-ups here in Ireland. We've got a great pool of talent," he told Newstalk radio yesterday.

However, he will be weighing up the pros and cons before deciding what exactly he wants to do.

"I got advice from somebody to put down seven or eight things you want to do and then put a matrix together about why you should do it and why you shouldn't do it," he said.

Mr Little said he will continue to work despite the €18m he got in the News Corp deal, because "it's who I am".

He added that he now has the time and freedom to decide what he wants to do, and will not be rushing into anything he is not sure of.

"I have the ability to say no to what I don't want to do, and yes to what I want to do," he said.

"When I started Storyful, there was only one thing that drove me forward and that was an idea, but now there are so many ideas, so one is to go into a traditional media organisation and the second is to go out on my own or to join an existing start-up that has the potential to go bananas.

"I can see that in Dublin and I can also see some other areas that are going to explode.

"Long-form video, investigative journalism, data journalism, I could go on with the list of things that are fascinating me at the moment, so I'm going to take a bit of time and take a world tour like a kid in a candy shop."

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