ITV hits 13% World Cup ad revenue growth target

ITV hit the 13 per cent ad revenue growth target it set out to achieve in its second quarter as advertisers snapped up its premium priced advertising slots around the World Cup.

ITV’s ad revenue grew 13% in its second quarter, boosted by its broadcast of the FIFA World Cup.

Overall, ITV’s broadcast ad revenue for the first six months of the year was up 7 per cent to £981m in the six months to 30 June, driven by an improving ad market and the timing of Easter and the broadcast of the World Cup. Profit before tax grew 40 per cent to £250m

However, the broadcaster was “disappointed” with its share of viewing over the period. In the first six months, ITV1’s share was down 3 per cent and the entire ITV family’s share of viewing down 5 per cent, impacted by a “disappointing” performance from ITV2 and ITV3.

ITV says it hopes its autumn schedule and the launch of new lifestyle channel ITVBe will improve its share of viewing over the coming six months.

Outside of the 30-second spot, the broadcaster says it continued to drive revenues through sponsorship, interactivity and brand extensions, including selling more than half a million tickets for live events such as the Coronation Street set tour and implementing sponsorships such as Morrisons for Britain’s Got Talent and Saturday Night Takeaway, McCain for Emmerdale and Sony, Santander and Carling for the World Cup.

Non-NAR revenue, which includes revenue outside of traditional spot advertising, grew 4 per cent to £588m.

Adam Crozier, ITV chief executive, says the broadcaster continues to invest in its online services and that ITV Player is now “fit to compete”. This was highlighted by the amount of video requests on the service growing 20 per cent year on year and the platform reaching 5.6 million registered users.

ITV is now four years into its five-year transformation plan which set out to rebalance the business and grow new revenue streams. Crozier says the “vision remains unchanged” and that the broadcaster sees “clear opportunities” for growth in the business.

He adds: “The market environment in which we operate is constantly changing, characterised by converging media and the increasing influence of technology, which brings both challenges and opportunities.

“ITV’s financial strength and its strategic advantages, including the scale of our UK channels, our share of the advertising market and our growing global network…put us in a strong position to be able to meet these challenges and exploit opportunities for growth.”