LONDON: The UK's biggest commercial broadcaster, ITV, is revamping its advertising sales division in a bid to halt the slide in revenue at flagship television channel, ITV1. ITV Sales will henceforth be known as ITV Customer Relations. shifting its focus from negotiation to planning.

Explains ITVCR managing director Gary Digby: "The new structure will mean more emphasis on developing creative and bespoke propositions for existing and new customers as well as growing the TV market as a whole."

ITV1 is expected to kiss goodbye to £230 million ($439m; €344m) of ad revenue this year and is already down by around £170m for 2007.

The company says the ITVCR unit will build stronger relationships with strategic planning agencies to "maximise creative solutions" across the portfolio, which includes a number of digital channels and websites.

The digital offerings are set attract £130m of advertising this year, increasing to a likely £160m in 2007.

ITV's new strategy has been broadly welcomed by UK media agencies.

Declares Neil Jones, md at Carat: "This makes a lot of sense and is a good idea because the future for advertisers is diversity and, as a company, ITV must become more commercial and open minded."

The new system will be in place for next year's trading season which will determine TV spend for 2008.

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff