ITV reported strong first half revenue and profit gains, helped by its coverage of the World Cup and growth at ITV Studios and its online and interactive division.
In the first half of the year, revenues at ITV’s content arm ITV Studios were up 2%, with the firm having also completed its acquisition of 80% of Leftfield Entertainment.
CEO Adam Crozier (pictured) said: “Looking forward we expect good growth in ITV Studios in 2014, driven by our acquisitions. In 2015 we will see further growth from these acquisitions and we will return to good organic growth helped by our investment in global scripted content, such as Texas Rangers and Aquarius in the US and Jekyll & Hyde, Jambusters and Thunderbirds Are Go in the UK.”
ITV Studios’ half-year revenues increased to £402 million (US$680.4 million) from £295 million a year earlier. EBIT profit was up 14% year-on-year at £72 million.
In its half yearly report, released today, ITV said that total revenues for the six months were up 7% to £1.225 billion and EITA before exceptional items was up 11% to £332 million.
The World Cup resulted in improved ITV viewing share in Q2 and even though the tournament pushed up schedule costs by £40 million, the “highly geared nature of advertising revenues and the higher margins of online, pay and interactive revenues” resulted in EBITA growth, said ITV.
The firm’s online, pay and interactive revenues were up 20% year-on-year to £67 million and ITV said this is on track to deliver strong growth for the year as a whole.
“We have made further good progress with our strategy of growing and strengthening all parts of ITV. In the first six months of the year we again delivered double-digit profit growth in every area of the business and increased revenues by 7%,” said Crozier.