Glagow-headquartered radio, TV and newspaper conglomerate Scottish Media Group yesterday posted yearly results and predicted that commercial network ITV – via which the group broadcasts – would increase its ad revenue over the course of 2001.

Despite the dark cloud currently overhanging the TV ad industry, SMG chief executive Andrew Flanagan forecast a silver lining of “1% to 2% actual growth” in ITV’s ad income for the year as a whole.

Meanwhile, SMG revealed that its share of ITV’s net ad revenue had dropped during 2000 from 6.12% to 5.88%. Accounting for the fall, Flanagan declared that SMG had not shared in last year’s boom in adspend from dotcoms, telecoms companies and banks, a disproportionate amount of which went to southern ITV stations. SMG, whose airtime is now sold by Carlton, intends to be restored to its “historic 6% level” over the coming year.

The group also reported yearly pre-tax profits of £59 million, up 18% on 1999. Turnover, aided by the acquisition of Ginger Media Group, stood at £300.5m, up 24%. National radio station Virgin Radio, part of the Ginger group, saw revenue rise 22% to £33.6m and operating profits leap 58% to £15m.

News source: The Times (London)