Media Ad Spend

A ‘solid foundation’ for ITVX: ad revenue surges 16% at ITV

By John Glenday | Reporter

May 11, 2022 | 4 min read

ITV has posted a solid start to the year with ITV Studios (23%), total advertising (16%) and digital revenues (24%) all recording double-digit growth.

ITV

ITV ad revenue surges 16% on the cusp of ITVX

Advertising surge puts ITV in a strong position

  • Total advertising revenue jumped 16% in the three months to the end of March to bring all media and entertainment revenue to £545m – up from £483m a year earlier

  • Strong growth was recorded in every month, with January’s 15% rise topped by a 20% jump in February before ad revenues moderated again to 15% growth in March

  • The digital advertising subcategory remains particularly strong, with growth of 27% for the period versus the first quarter of 2021

ITVX looms large

  • ITV’s advertising prowess puts it in a strong position ahead of the much-anticipated launch of the ITVX streaming service at the tail end of the year

  • The broadcaster is betting big on streaming by increasing the amount of available content from 4,000 to 6,000 hours thanks to an agreement with Warner to screen content such as The Sex Lives of College Girls, The OC and One Tree Hill

  • Most scripted content is now made available to stream on the day and date of broadcast – a strategy that is paying off with 125m drama streams in the four months to the end of April, a rise of 8% year-on-year

  • ITV promises that this is just the tip of the iceberg of its ambitions, with a slate of new products and features planned to improve personalization

  • In parallel with this, Planet V – ITV’s custom addressable advertising platform – has logged over 1,300 users and drew 50 digital-only advertisers in the first quarter

ITV’s chief is in bullish mood despite darkening skies

  • ITV chief executive Carolyn McCall commented: “... we are making good progress in our goal to supercharge streaming by increasing our hours of content by 50% in the quarter to 6,000 hours and making available the majority of scripted programs in full for streaming at the same time as the initial broadcast.

  • “All of this provides a solid foundation for ITVX – our free, ad-funded streaming service – which is on track for launch in Q4, and we remain confident that we will deliver at least £750m of digital revenue by 2026.”

  • The immediate term is likely to prove much tougher for ITV, however, with total advertising revenues expected to slump 6% in the second quarter owing to unflattering comparisons with the Euros period last year – to say nothing of ongoing macroeconomic and geopolitical uncertainty

  • ITV’s tuned eye for commercial opportunities has placed it in the vanguard of a product placement push in the UK

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