ITV CEO Carolyn McCall Raises Cost Of Living Concerns As British Broadcasting Bosses Come Together To Talk PSB

ITV Boss Carolyn McCall has expressed concern that the British cost of living crisis could begin to hinder broadcaster revenue as they emerge from the pandemic, while BBC Director-General Tim Davey warned against “satisfaction” over changing audience habits .

ITV’s main source of income is advertising, but that income is “heavily tied to the economy”, according to McCall, who said the “gloomy” period could affect the network’s revenue.

She was speaking at the Deloitte & Anders Media & Telecom conference a day after ITV unveiled strong Q1 results and posted record ad revenue for the full year 2021.

The UK is currently in the midst of a major cost of living crisis, with energy and gas bills rising and businesses raising serious concerns over the knock-on effect on the economy.

However, raising concerns about survival, he said that “people have realized the value of TV advertising”. [post lockdown] And how can you get an emotional message.”

And while ITV’s share price is declining, it said it “in no way reflects our performance”, after a strong set of recent results, pointing to external issues such as the war in Ukraine.

McCall was speaking on a panel of PSB owners featuring BBC DG Tim Davey, channel 4 CEO Alex Mahon, channel 5-master Paramount UK boss Maria Kyriakou and STV CEO Simon Pitts.

Everyone passionately argued for the strength of PSBs in future and to face many threats.

Mahon, whose broadcaster is to be sold by the UK government, said the UK is “above other countries in its provision of PSBs,” alluding to “terrible” public service offerings in countries such as NPR, or the US with Russia, Which is widely condemned for its state-controlled broadcasting area.

“We should be very proud of what we’ve got here and take great care in doing things that may seem unintentional but are certainly not unexpected,” he said, pointing to Channel 4 sales.

Pitts also argued that streamers are not free from the crisis of living and cited difficulties being experienced by the likes of Netflix in the UK.

He pointed out that episodes of Channel 5 shows such as Susan Calman’s offerings are being viewed more than streamer hits such as Bridgerton. “We need some perspective on what’s happening in the market,” Pitts said.


Asked where the field would be in five years, BBC boss Davy warned against “satisfaction” about changing audience habits, which could have “serious consequences”.

“My organization is very focused on broadcasting but we need to take our content to the places people want to watch,” he explained. “Look at the number of people watching TV on mobile phones. We have to find out how PSB works in all environments. Any complacency will have dire consequences and the license fee debate is central to this.”

For McCall, the next five years will see more UK and European consolidation coming in the week it acquired Fremantle. normal people manufacturer and Drama powerhouse Element Pictures, while Kiriakou said it will be “a continuation of the trends accelerating during Covid”.

Kyriacou also talked about the soon-to-be-launched streamer Paramount+, which now has a June 22 UK launch date.

“We can use the knowledge we have gained on Channel 5 to be UK-focused and see the world,” he added. “I look forward to seeing British content succeed on the global stage through Paramount+.”