ITV claims “outstanding” nine months | Major Businesses | Business | News | Rapid TV News
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Issuing a trading update for the first nine months of 2021, the UK’s leading commercial broadcaster ITV says that it has successfully completed the first phase of its digital transformation as advertising, production and digital revenues all rose sharply.
ITV Studios Vigil 4Dec2020
For the nine months ended 30 September 2021, total external revenue was up 28% year-on-year at £2.381 billion and up 8% compared with 2019.

In the core Media and Entertainment (M&E) business line, revenue was up 26% compared with same period of 2020 at £1.594 billion with total advertising revenue (TAR) up 30%. Of this, total advertising video-on-demand (AVOD) revenue was up 54%. with July up 68%, August up 24% and September up 16% compared with the same period in 2020. ITV’s total advertising revenue (TAR) for 2021 is expected to be the highest in ITV's history. Q4 TAR is expected to be up between 11% and 13% against strong comparatives in 2020, with October up 17% and we forecast November to be up around 12% and December to be up between 5% and 10%.

Advertising revenues were boosted by growth in total share of viewing (SOV) and online viewing. ITV main channel's share of viewing for the nine months to the end of September was up from 16.6% to 17.0% and ITV Family SOV was up from 22.2% to 22.5% with the Euros, Love Island and dramas such as Manhunt: The Night Stalker and Vera, delivering strong ratings as we continue to provide both mass audiences and key demographics.
However, ITV total viewing was down 5%, against what the broadcaster said was a tough comparative in 2020 which was driven by the rise in viewing due to the lockdown. Online viewing was up 39%, with dwell time up 9% and simulcast viewing up 51%. Acceleration of ITV’s AVOD strategy has driven a 22% increase in monthly active users (MAUs) to 9.6 million at 30 September 2021.

For the growth powerhouse that has been ITV Studios, total revenue was up 32% on an annual basis at £1.193 million (and up 6% compared with 2019. Boosting revenues were a range of new and returning programmes and formats in the UK and internationally, including Vigil for BBC One (pictured), Physical for Apple TV+, The Long Call and Endeavour for ITV, Ten Year Old Tom for HBO Max, Snowpiercer season 2 for Netflix and Love Island in the UK for ITV and in the US for CBS.

Assessing the nine-month results, Carolyn McCall, ITV chief executive claimed that by “any standards” ITV had an outstanding nine months. "We are becoming an increasingly scaled digital business…Today's results further illustrate that ITV has successfully completed the first phase of its More Than TV strategy and is accelerating the second phase of digital transformation as we evolve our products, user experiences and ways of working…With the combination of Broadcast and ITV Hub's mass simultaneous reach, our brand safe addressable advertising product and the strong economy, 2021 looks set to have the highest advertising revenue in ITV's history, despite the lockdown in Q1.”

Going forward, ITV said that it had a strong pipeline of scripted and unscripted programmes going into Q4 and 2022 as we further diversify the business by genre, by geography and by customer. It pointed to a further roll out of the redesigned ITV Hub with improved functionality and increased personalisation and that it was on track to double the number of hours of content available on the on-demand and catch-up platform compared with 2021. The company also observed that its BritBox International joint venture service is delivering strong growth in subscriptions across the US, Canada and Australia and successfully launched in South Africa in August with more markets expected in 2022.