Granada Posts Loss as Ad Slump and ITV Digital Take Toll

28 November 2001

Beleaguered British broadcasting giant Granada Media posted an overall loss of £186 million for its fiscal full-year, due to sinking ad revenues and mounting losses at ITV Digital, the dTV platform it co-owns with Carlton Communications.

For the year to September, profits before taxes and one-off items sank 27% to £236m, as ad revenue dropped 12% to £889m and turnover fell from £1.59 billion to £1.48bn. Losses at ITV Digital jumped 26% to £234m. Excluding digital investment, goodwill and exceptional items, profits came in below expectations, tumbling from £294m to £201m.

The broadcaster – biggest member of commercial network ITV – announced it will axe a further 430 staff, bringing the total layoffs over the last year to over 1,000.

Granada added it could not yet see an end to the ad slump, though the downturn has slowed since October. Said finance director Harry Staunton: “There is no improvement in visibility going forward, although the position over the past three months is significantly better.”

News sources: BBC Online Business News (UK);