Britain’s Dominant TV Duo Set to Lose £300 Million

25 November 2002

Carlton Communications and Granada Media, the two television giants that between them control Britain's ITV network, are each set to unveil their full year results later this week.

Word around the TV parish pump is that the twosome will report a combined loss in the region of £300 million ($471.77m; €474.29m) – with Carlton outstripping Granada in the red ink stakes for the year ended September 30. The losses, which include exceptional items, are due in part to the slump in advertising revenues (albeit less than in 2001), and to massive writedowns following the insolvency of ITV Digital.

Carlton is tipped to report a profit before tax, exceptional items and goodwill of around £46.8m – some sixty per cent down on last year’s £118m. On the same basis Granada is expected to post pre-tax profits depressed to between £130m-£170m versus £201m last year. This will be the first time the duo have published their financials since announcing on October 10 their planned £2.6bn merger.

Granada’s writedowns reportedly include upward of £500m in respect of its Anglia and Meridian television units – both acquired from United Business Media for £1.75bn at the height of the media boom two years ago. The writedown reflects the collapse in media stock values since then.

Data sourced from: Multiple origins; additional content by WARC staff