Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Even Lara in Fur Can't Save ITV... Media

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Even Lara in Fur Can't Save ITV... Media

Article excerpt

Byline: ANDREW NEIL

CARLTON'S pound sterling156 million pre-tax loss for this year was at least an improvement on last year's pound sterling409 million loss.

But that's about all you can say in Carlton's favour. Add in equally dire results today from Granada, the other half of ITV, and it's clear that Britain's biggest commercial network -- with combined losses of pound sterling300 million - is still in a dismal state.

Carlton and Granada argue that they have now absorbed the pound sterling1 billion costs of the collapse of ITV Digital and that ad revenues are starting to rise again. Fair enough.

But ITV had a dominant 60 per cent share of TV ad revenues only three years ago.

Now it is expected to slip below 52 per cent in the run-up to Christmas, its lowest-ever level.

ITV's long-term prospects are threatened by a fundamental flaw: it is haemorrhaging the sort of young, affluent viewers whom advertisers will pay a premium to reach. …

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