Robust revs and profits as original content drives UKTV

DetailsJoseph O'Halloran | 19 May 2015

It may have built its reputation on airing classics but the latest set of accounts for UKTV has shown how original content and online video have both driven substantial increases in viewing share – and profits.

In September 2014 the Scripps and BBC Worldwide joint venture first began to show the fruits of a period of sustained investment in content, featuring some of the UK's biggest names in TV. It now will report for the 2014 financial year that it has made record-breaking revenue, profits and ratings on the back of this major investment in exclusive and original programmes. Its yearly revenue was £283 million, up £5 million year-on-year, while profits have leapt 10% to £74.1 million.

But just as impressive has been audience share, which in the first quarter of 2015 was 9.41%. This compares well to establish linear broadcast rivals Channel 5 with 9.82%. in addition to strong performance from core channels Dave, Gold, Watch and Drama, UKTV also reported a meteoric rise in viewership from its online video player over the year.

Commenting on the results, CEO Darren Childs said: "This is the first time in the history of British television that a non-public service broadcaster has played such a big role in the ratings. We are significantly increasing our investment in content."