BBC announces ambition to double global audience to 500 million

Date: 08.10.2013     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 17.53
Tony Hall, Director General of the BBC, today set out his ambition for the BBC to double its audiences to reach 500 million people around the world by the BBC’s centenary in 2022.

In a speech given at the BBC’s Radio Theatre in New Broadcasting House, Mr Hall hailed the BBC’s news services as a "global news powerhouse".

Tony Hall said: “I want us to make the most of BBC News around the world. We have a global news powerhouse in this building. In the past month, we all saw it at work in the BBC’s unparalleled reporting from Kenya and also inside Syria.

“What we don’t always see so clearly is that over the past 80 years, we’ve built a global news service that is trusted, respected and relied upon by a quarter of a billion people around the world.

"Our ambition is to double our global audience by 2022 to half a billion.”

Reaching this target will include:

  • Driving digital growth through mobile and social products, in English and Languages
  • Transforming into a video-led news site
  • Developing new products for commercial exploitation and broadening sponsorship opportunities outside the UK
  • Further improving the quality of World News and strengthening regional coverage for Asia, US and Africa

BBC Director of News, James Harding, said: “Wherever I go in the world, people know and trust the BBC and recognise it as one of Britain’s greatest institutions. For 80 years we’ve brought impartial and trusted news around the world. As we approach our centenary we should be more ambitious than ever.

“But we can’t be complacent; we’re in a rapidly changing world where people’s news consumption is changing. We must – and we will – innovate to stay ahead.”

Notes to Editors

The BBC’s global news services – the World Service, BBC World News, and - currently reach 256 million people every week. The World Service broadcasts in 27 languages with output on TV, radio and digital platforms, including responsive mobile designed sites.