ITV forecasts “continuing volatility” as revenue growth slows

ITV says advertising revenue will slow in the first six months of its financial year, while it is “cautious” about the full-year.

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The Coronation Street and X-Factor broadcaster forecasts revenue will grow by between 1 and 2% in the six months to 30 June, compared with an 18% increase in the first half of last year when companies spent heavily ahead of the football World Cup.

Ad revenue in April increased by 6%, the company says, lower than the 8 to 12% bump that many analysts predicted the Royal Wedding and extended bank holidays would provide. First quarter revenue earned from advertisers was up 12%.

Adam Crozier, ITV chief executive, says: “We expected that the ad market in the second quarter would be difficult given the very tough comparators and the continued economic uncertainty and – while this has proved to be the case – we still expect to see an increase in ad revenues for the first half of the year”.

Despite the “continuing volatility in the TV advertising market”, Crozier adds that the company will forge ahead with its “transformation” plans. He wants the broadcaster to produce more self made hits such as Downton Abbey, which can be sold internationally, and generate more money from online channels.

Crozier has drafted in several senior executives to execute the changes including recently hired group marketing director Rufus Radcliffe.

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