BBC Worldwide delivers solid performance in challenging economic climate

BBC Worldwide’s performance has remained very robust despite the economic challenges facing the media sector, with particular growth in programme sales and our international channels. 2013/14 will be a transformational year for the company with a re-focused strategy that maximises opportunities presented by new markets and technology. This will ensure BBC Worldwide remains a world-class content company that inspires audiences around the world and helps build the reputation and the commercial success of the global BBC.”Tim Davie, Chief Executive of BBC Worldwide and Director, Global
Date: 16.07.2013     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 18.11
Category: BBC Worldwide
Strong growth in programme sales and international branded channels

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  • Headline profit up 1% to £156m
  • Headline sales up 3% to £1,116m
  • £176m invested in content in 2012/13

Today, BBC Worldwide has published its Annual Review for 2012/13. The company has delivered another steady performance against tough global trading conditions and has continued to invest in, commercialise and showcase BBC content around the world.

Headline Results

In the 12 months to 31 March 2013, the company reported a 1% rise in headline profit to £156m (2011/12: £155m).Profit before tax, excluding gains and losses on disposals, of £125m (2011/12: £104m) was up 21%. The company grew headline sales by 3% to £1,116m (2011/12: £1,085m).

BBC Worldwide exists to support the BBC public service mission and to maximise profits on its behalf. This year, BBC Worldwide returned £156m (2011/12: £216m) to the BBC, bringing total returns to the BBC to over £1bn since 2007. Returns are down 28% since 2011/12. However, last year’s returns included a £73m one-off dividend relating to the sale of BBC Magazines. Returns for 2012/13 increased by 9% excluding these one-off proceeds.

BBC Worldwide’s 34 branded international channels have continued to drive revenues, through launching new operations, widening distribution and increasing advertising sales. Programme sales and distribution also continued to be a formidable source of profit, and passed the £300m revenue mark for the first time.

Announcing the results, Tim Davie, Chief Executive of BBC Worldwide and Director, Global, said:

“BBC Worldwide’s performance has remained very robust despite the economic challenges facing the media sector, with particular growth in programme sales and our international channels. 2013/14 will be a transformational year for the company with a re-focused strategy that maximises opportunities presented by new markets and technology. This will ensure BBC Worldwide remains a world-class content company that inspires audiences around the world and helps build the reputation and the commercial success of the global BBC.”

Investment in Content

In 2012/13, we continued to invest in content enabling the BBC and the UK independent sector to create programmes that rival the very best in the world.

  • BBC Worldwide invested £176m in content in 2012/13. Investment in distribution rights was £104m, of which £74m was into BBC commissions. £91m was returned to independent rights holders through upfront rights investment, profit share and royalties.
  • Programme sales and distribution had revenues of £312m with particular growth in Europe and the first full year impact of Video on Demand (VOD) sales – and BBC Worldwide Showcase 2013 attracted a record 700 international buyers to the Liverpool-based annual sales event.
  • Top selling programmes this year included Africa (sold to 195 territories), Top Gear USA (sold to 174 territories), Ripper Street and Parade’s End (each to over 120 territories).
  • Delivered strong content through brokering co-production deals such as Africa (with CCTV, Discovery channel and France Télévisions), Ripper Street (with Lookout Point and Tiger Aspect) and forthcoming comedy The Wrong Mans (with Hulu).
  • The format of The Great Bake Off now has 13 international commissions and Dancing with the Stars (the international version of Strictly Come Dancing) has sold 46 local versions.

 

Growth in international reach

Our focus has remained on growing our global branded channels to provide an international platform for the best of British creativity - driving exports and showcasing the BBC, the UK’s creative industries and ‘brand Britain’ overseas. 

  • BBC Worldwide has 406m subscriber homes to its TV channels around the world (up from 356m in 2011/12).
  • The BBC America channel grew its reach to 81m homes (from 77m in 2011/12).
  • There were 15 new launches of BBC Worldwide’s channel brands in the year, including for the first time, channels in Brazil, Burma and Cambodia.
  • The company continues to bring international audiences together through global viewing events, such as live coverage of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee,  Planet Earth Live and global Top Gear screenings just days after UK transmission.
  • In April 2013, the business was restructured around geographical markets to ensure future growth in international markets.

 

For further information please contact:

Kath Grimes

Kath.Grimes@bbc.com / 020 8433 2506

 

Lucy Philippson

Lucy.Philippson@bbc.com / 020 8433 2687

 

NOTES TO EDITORS

 

The full Annual Review, as well as the BBC Worldwide Annual Report and Financial Statements, can be found here: www.bbcworldwide.com/annualreview

Due to the organisational restructure in April 2013, this year’s Annual Review has a sole focus on the last financial year and will be the last to report in the current format.

About BBC Worldwide Ltd. BBC Worldwide Limited is the main commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). BBC Worldwide exists to support the BBC public service mission and to maximise profits on its behalf. It does this through investing in, commercialising and showcasing content from the BBC around the world, in a way that is consistent with BBC standards and values. The business also builds the reach and reputation of the BBC brand overseas and champions British creativity.

In 2012/13, BBC Worldwide generated headline profits of £156m and headline sales of £1,116m and returned £156m to the BBC. For more detailed performance information please see our Annual Review website: http://www.bbcworldwide.com/annualreview

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