LONDON: Despite much hand-wringing and dark mutterings about revenue shortfalls, the UK's publicly-owned but commercially funded TV broadcaster, Channel 4, had a solid advertising year in 2007.

It took its best ever share of the TV ad market to see overall group revenue rise by £8 million ($15.8m; €10m) to £945m. Advertising on its main channel increased by £12.4m to £676.8m.

However, it reports that programming costs for its flagship channel grew by 4% to £536.5m, resulting in an operating loss of £7.8m.

Strong growth in ad revenue from its digital products offset a wider malaise, with revenue growing 32% to £148.4m. 

Nevertheless, chairman Luke Johnson warned: "2007 will be the last year in which Channel 4, under its current funding model, manages the difficult balance between increased creative investment and financial break-even."

The company has long been asking for extra funding as it faces increasing pressure from multi-channel digital TV and competition from the web.

Last year, a report commissioned by media regulator Ofcom said Channel 4 was likely to be loss-making beyond 2010 unless it received cash help.

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff