ITV bouncing back

UK commercial network ITV will unveil its latest financials on February 27th, and the market expects the broadcaster to declare a strong upturn in advertising revenues, with a “strong start to ITV growth in January and February [which] has continued into March” as far as forward bookings are concerned.

Investment bankers Morgan Stanley, in a note to clients, admitted that it liked the fundamentals of ITV, and is raising its expectations given that ad-revenue might be as much as 8 per cent up during the current 3 month period, and says that 2013 overall should see an improvement of some 2-3 per cent in ad-revenues (whereas the bank was previously expecting the year to be “flat” in terms of ad-growth).  The bank warns that these numbers could change for the worse, but says there is a greater sense of optimism amongst media buyers.

“The outlook for 2013 appears relatively positive Buyers are talking the TV market being flat to modestly up in 2013. Buyers are not seeing advertisers take money out of TV to put into mobile or online. Instead, these advertising forms are being funded by slightly increased overall budgets and by money taken from press advertising,” says Morgan Stanley.

“TV is structurally no longer seen as a digital loser. TV has had a good post recession period with viewing of television rising to almost 4 hours per day for the average TV viewer with two thirds of viewing being directed at commercial channels. The vast majority of viewing remains live or near live (92 per cent according to BARB) and TV is being increasingly regarded as a complement to digital and social media with use of second screens meaning TV is a driver of digital usage,” adds the bank.

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