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International generates more than UK for ITV Studios

2009 revenues were down at ITV studios, the production arm of UK free-to-air broadcaster ITV. ITV said it had been a tough year for ITV Studios.

“With their own advertising revenues falling, commissioners sought to apply downward pressure on producers’ prices and margins or replaced original commissions with cheaper acquisitions and repeats,” it noted.

For the first time ITV Studios generated more cash from international operations than from the UK. Revenues from outside the UK increased 9% year-on-year, taking the total £335 million (US$504.2 million). The UK business has suffered from getting a smaller share of commissions from ITV itself.

Overall ITV Studios’ revenues fell 4%, taking the total to £597 million. The annual EBITA profit edged up £1 million and came in at £91 million. ITV Studios Global Entertainment, the broadcaster’s distribution business, increased revenues £3 million to take the 2009 total to £126 million.

Overall revenues at ITV were £1.9 billion compared with £2 billion a year earlier. The broadcaster reported an adjusted profit of £108 million, a 4% decrease year-on-year.

Interim CEO John Creswell was bullish. He said: “We won back share of the TV advertising market, grew our audiences in peak time and online, and increased our international production presence. We took out costs of £169m, substantially reduced our headcount and lowered net debt by over £100m.”

Adam Crozier will take over as CEO next month.