Broadcaster ITV has warned that advertising revenues will fall by as much as 11 per cent this summer as viewers focus on the BBC’s wall-to-wall coverage of the Olympic Games.
Popular shows such as Britain’s Got Talent and the Euro 2012 football tournament helped ITV’s ad revenues rise by 3 per cent in the first six months of the year, resulting in a 15 per cent rise in underlying profits to £235 million.
But the Downton Abbey broadcaster expects a revenues fall of 10 per cent in July and 11 per cent in August, while September’s ad figure could be down by as much as 5 per cent.
It is likely that advertisers are reining in spending partly because viewers are expected to tune into the Olympics games coverage on the BBC, although the broader slowdown in the economy is also to blame.
The profits rise also reflected the continued recovery in fortunes at its studio division, which has produced Titanic and Inspector Morse spin-off Lewis.
The profits figures came in higher than City expectations of £211m, sending shares up 5 per cent in early trading.
Revenues were up 10 per cent to £1.1 billion.
Patrick Yau, an analyst at Peel Hunt, said: “ITV has reported a solid set of interims, with double-digit revenue and profit growth. Significantly, the company continues to move away from broadcast advertising.
“The advertising outlook for the small and volatile third quarter remains depressed and we are trimming our advertising revenue assumptions for the remainder of the year.”
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Sunday 26 May 2013
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