LONDON: BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the publicly-funded UK broadcaster, has posted record pre-tax profits of £111 million ($222.2m; €165.1m) - a 24% increase on the previous year.

Chief executive John Smith has also outlined plans to increase profits to £200m in the next five years through a range of new acquisitions, fresh online initiatives and increasing the amount of revenue earned from outside the UK.

More staff will be recruited to sell BBC programmes and channels in countries including China, the US and India, with other scheduled developments including an advertising-funded international version of the Corporation's website.

This would become the main portal for the 40 million non-UK based users of, and the launch of a number of social networking sites.

Smith said: "The last three years have been [a period] where we have not necessarily been growing the top-line but squeezing as much out of the portfolio as we could. The next phase is all about top-line growth."

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff