ITV calls in consultancy to cut costs

ITV has called in Boston Consulting Group to identify cost-saving measures for the second time this year. The move comes three weeks after the broadcaster warned it anticipated a drop of 9% in TV ad revenues as the financial downturn hits advertising budgets.

Group chief operating officer John Cresswell (pictured) sent a memo to ITV staff yesterday (November 27), confirming that the broadcaster would have to make more cuts as the advertising market continued to suffer.

He said that advertising revenues at the group were expected to fall by 5% in 2008, which means a fall in advertising revenue of £75m and a further 6% to 7% fall of £100m in 2009.

“The need for action is therefore urgent. ITV is facing considerable uncertainty. We need to accelerate our plans to improve the efficiency of all our operations now,” he warns in the memo.

Boston Consulting were first called by ITV in June to review its brand and commercial division, and its global content building. The consultancy recommended £35m in cuts, and a reduction in its regional news service. ITV has already made 1,000 job cuts this year and merged its online operations into its main TV business.

Cresswell says that there are plans to set up a project steering group with representatives from all its divisions working with Boston Consulting to identify potential cost savings.

The review will begin immediately and is expected to be completed early next year.

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