Homegrown shows paint bright picture for ITV

ITV’s studios business showed further signs of recovery yesterday as the broadcaster predicted profits of £100m from its homegrown shows this year.

The division, which has produced Vera, reality show Peter Andre: My Life Story and Homefront, saw revenues jump 20 per cent to £498m in the first nine months of 2012 as ITV reduces its exposure to the volatile ad market.

Revenues from television advertising were down 9 per cent in August due to the distraction of the Olympics but are likely to be flat in December as hit shows such as I’m a Celebrity and The X Factor reach their conclusion.

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Chief executive Adam Crozier said the number of new commissions and recommissions already secured for next year suggested there will be further growth at ITV Studios next year.

ITV production Titanic has proved a particular hit overseas, while its other popular shows include Come Dine With Me.

The group’s share of viewing figures for the year to date were down 3 per cent due to the Olympics, with flagship channel ITV1 off by 6 per cent.

Mr Crozier said: “This has been an extraordinary year for UK television with many unique events including the Queen’s Jubilee, the London Olympics and Paralympics.

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“In fact nine out of 10 programmes aired will not return next year and as we expected this has affected our viewing performance.”

Mr Crozier said he was hopeful of improving ITV’s share of viewing next year although he predicted monthly volatility in the UK television advertising market.

In August ITV bought the independent production company co-founded by Graham Norton and behind the Bafta award-winning Graham Norton Show, So Television, as part of its plans to ramp up its own-made content.

Analysts at Numis said it was a “strong” update, and they upgraded the company to “buy” from “add”.

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“Despite early scare stories on fourth-quarter advertising which indicated a mid-single digit decline, ITV has outperformed the market and expects Q4 to be down just 2 per cent,” they said.

“By category, retail has shown improvement after a soft first-half while tech is benefiting from the tablet Christmas and telecommunications from 4G,” it added, in reference to the high profile advertising campaign from EE for its new 4G mobile network.

ITV ended the period with net cash of £90m.