BBC Worldwide and BBC Studios to merge

Will bring the BBC 'into line with the rest of the industry'
By Jenny Priestley,

The BBC has announced it is merging its Worldwide and Studio operations into a single commercial organisation.

The Corporation says BBC Studios will "ensure the BBC is best placed to succeed both creatively and commercially and will better serve licence fee payers by:

  • Creating a unified business with a single business plan and combined operating model better placed to support the full range of the UK’s creative talent, producing high quality, distinctive UK content in bases across the country.
  • Maximising the intellectual property value of BBC programming for the benefit of UK licence fee payers.
  • Supporting the UK creative economy by distributing British content as a cultural export and source of global influence."

It means the commercial activities already carried out by BBC Worldwide - including content financing, sales and commercial channels - and BBC Studios - the BBC’s main programme production arm - will be brought together in "a simplified organisation with a single business plan and combined operating model."

BBC Director-General Tony Hall said: “Creating a single BBC Studios will bring the BBC in line with the industry, be simpler and more efficient. It will help ensure that licence fee payers in the UK continue to receive outstanding British programmes which reflect British lives, long into the future.

“It will also ensure the BBC can continue to play its crucial role in supporting the successful UK creative economy.”

The new BBC Studios will be led by chief executive officer Tim Davie and chief creative officer Mark Linsey.

Tim Davie added, “The new BBC Studios will be focused on the highest quality British content, underpinning our future financial return to licence fee payers. It will allow us to better serve customers, indie partners and the wider industry, resulting in world-class British productions for audiences in the UK and overseas."