Grade says ITV “on track” despite profits slump

ITV has seen its annual profits for 2007 plummet by 35% to £188m, but insists its turnaround plan is “on track”. Unveiling the results today (Wednesday) executive chairman Michael Grade says now is “the beginning of a revival” in the broadcaster’s fortunes.

ITV has seen its annual profits for 2007 plummet by 35% to £188m, but insists its turnaround plan is “on track”. Unveiling the results today (Wednesday) executive chairman Michael Grade says now is “the beginning of a revival” in the broadcaster’s fortunes.

He says: “I am confident that the business is in better shape going into 2008. The launch of the new ITV1 schedule shows our commitment to innovation.”

Grade says the first priority for ITV was to stem the decline, which it “more than did”, delivering an increase in viewing across the broadcaster’s portfolio of channels for the first time in over a decade.

Advertising revenues at terrestrial channel ITV fell 4% to £1.22bn, which Grade said was “substantially less” than the 12% decline in 2006. Net ad revenue at its digital channels, however, was up 33% to £209m.

Grade says he has set a revenue target of 3 to 5% compound annual growth to 2010, rising to 5% to 2012. He adds that the global content business aims to double its annual revenues by 2012 and the group plans to deliver £150 million of annual internet revenues by 2010.

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