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UK’s commercial TV sector ‘faces permanent change’ unless the government helps

Report from Enders Analysis warns of a "bleak future" ahead

A new report from Enders Analysis has warned the UK’s commercial TV sector faces a “bleak future” unless the government intervenes.

The report warned a combination of declining advertising revenue and a shutdown in filming had left broadcasters and the production sector facing  “permanent change.”

It added that commercial TV companies are expected to face their biggest ever year-on-year decline in advertising revenue for the second quarter of 2020, suggesting it could decline by as much as 40 per cent.

The report calls for increased government support in the form of advertising spend, including a firm commitment to continue with its health campaigns over the coming months, while increasing its spend, which Enders said would “go a small way to propping up the advertising market.”

Enders also suggested a loosening of Channel 4’s programming obligations, as well as revisions to existing measures (to capture a greater proportion of freelancers) in order to ensure a “flourishing, vibrant sector for the future.”

ITV and Channel 4 have both issued warnings over the decline in advertising. ITV scrapped its dividend and director bonuses and said its entire board will take a 20 per cent pay cut. Channel 4 is expected to do the same.