ITV up 6% and ‘not for sale’

itvITV has reported a 6 per cent increase in pre-tax profits to £348 million (€429m) in 2012. The company said it has seen growth in all areas with revenues up to 3 per cent to £2.19 billion, fuelled by a strong performance in its studios, online and its pay and interactive businesses.

Chief executive Adam Crozier said the growth had come despite “a broadly flat advertising market” and that it had seen non-advertising revenues of more than £1 billion, an increase of 12 per cent year on year. He said the company had “a positive start to 2013” with advertising expected to be up 5 per cent in the first quarter. This is despite concerns that ITV’s heavy hitters such as The X Factor are underperforming.

Crozier said advertising was up 7.5 per cent in January, was flat in February but would be up 8 per cent in March ahead of the overall market which is experiencing a 4 per cent growth. The growth, he said was being largely been driven by retail, telecoms and broadband commercials.

Crozier quashed rumours of a takeover. Asked if ITV had received any approaches from equity funds or others, he said: “Absolutely none at all.”

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