Global Company Builder MIT Ventures Unveils New Business Model, Plans to Strengthen Presence in Silicon Valley

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MIT Ventures has unveiled its new business model and strategic plan to create a network of interconnected companies focused on technology, mobile and trade finance in the US and in West Africa. It has also announced the opening of a new office in Silicon Valley in 2015.

Our new business model is an ambitious mix of resource optimization, business development, lean startup methodology and execution.

MIT Ventures, a company focused on building transformative ventures in the mobile, ad tech and digital spaces, unveiled its new business model called UNITED and a strategic plan to go after high growth markets in the US and West Africa in 2015. The company shifted its operations from an ad tech consulting company to a venture-building model, similar to the likes of IdeaLabs, Obvious Corp and BetaWorks, where business ideas are incubated internally before maturing as independent companies, supported by operational and investment teams. The UNITED business model leverages the power of the company’s vast network to unify complementary resources in the US and in Africa in order to build highly specialized ventures that share capital, market knowledge and business development expertise.

The company has enlisted a team of advisors, finance experts and venture partners, such as Derek Anovick, CEO of Manhattan-based Quake Marketing; Bachir Diagne, CEO of Royal Trading Alliance; Joseph and Andrew Weitzel, Box.biz’s technology entrepreneurs and a Dakar-based Senior Software Architect and Mobile Money Engineer. This strategy aims to sustain the company’s business model and activities in the technology, digital and trade finance sectors.

“Our new business model is an ambitious mix of resource optimization, business development, lean startup methodology and execution: we are venture builders with an exclusive focus on market transformation. Another one of our distinctive features is the fact that we are simultaneously active in two very different markets: the US and West Africa. With teams of successful entrepreneurs located in both markets, we can seize opportunities in very diverse industries such as trade finance and technology much faster than our competitors. And when the demand for a product or service doesn’t exist yet, we create it by introducing a disruptive element,” said Ali Diallo, Founder of MIT Ventures and former head of digital marketing operations at Gannett, Michigan.

“MIT Ventures started out as an ambitious startup idea born in a basement on the East Coast. It’s the classic story of bootstrapping entrepreneurs trying to build a company. There was a lot of sweat and struggle. Now that the company is on track to generate more revenues in 2015, it is time to grow and scale,” said Diallo.

After spending a year refining the business model on the East Coast and in Senegal, the MIT Ventures team is establishing a presence in Sunnyvale, CA. The new office will be fully staffed next summer once the company finalizes the launch of its African ventures and the opening of its Las Vegas-based digital innovation office. “Silicon Valley has a very open approach when it comes to believing in yet-unproven models and creating totally new markets,” said Diallo. “This openness feels like a natural fit for entrepreneurs like us who are constantly innovating and creating lean companies with very minimal investment and capital. When Andressen Horowitz’ Ben Dixon said at a Y Combinator presentation that the best startups are good ideas that look like bad ideas, we fully identified with his statement to the extent of calling it the Dixon Law and making it one of the core foundations of our venture-building business model. As an entrepreneur who constantly challenges the status-quo, I truly believe that if your product is not raising enough eyebrows, then it is probably not disruptive enough,” Diallo added.

One of the first African ventures to benefit from this new business model is Mobility Technologies S.A., a new mobile money company developed by the MIT Ventures team and that will be based in Manhattan and in Senegal. This company will power a Pan-African ecosystem centered on m-money, m-commerce and mobile application development. The company is currently in talks with several financial institutions regarding a multi-million dollar investment deal to support the launch of its international mobile money platform.

In the US, MIT Ventures has plans to build innovative ventures in the ad tech, analytics and mobile sectors. The company is currently collaborating with Quake Marketing in Las Vegas to develop several digital media initiatives including a Real-Time Bidding software with a focus on video advertising and a data reporting platform to address the needs of digital agencies and publishers.

About MIT Ventures:

MIT Ventures is a global company with offices in Silicon Valley and in Senegal that builds transformative ventures in the US and in West Africa. Its mission is to make transportation of resources, innovations and opportunities easier and more efficient for society. The company leverages Silicon Valley’s on-demand and sharing economy to create a network of global ventures that are powered by a set of shared ideas, resources, capital and technology. Through its ventures and affiliated companies, the company is present in Manhattan, Las Vegas, Washington DC, Montreal and Senegal, West Africa. MIT Ventures is active in the ad tech, digital media, technology, Internet, mobile, trade finance, Telecom and publishing sectors. Its ventures include Galaxy Mobile, AdWave, RTA SA, Mobility Technologies SA and Inovit Solutions.
Find out more at http://www.mitventures.co

MIT Ventures
1250 Oakmead Parkway, Suite 210
Sunnyvale, CA
Email: hello(at)mitventures.co

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Ali Diallo
MIT Ventures
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since: 02/2014
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