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Friday, 14 December, 2001, 17:06 GMT
Channel 5 feels advertising chill
Lord Hollick, chief executive, UBM
Lord Hollick: "Exceptionally tough year"
The slump in television advertising revenue, which has sent ITV chiefs scrambling for cost savings, has hit Channel 5.

United Business Media, which owns 35% of the channel, has revealed a "significant decline" in ad revenues at the unit.

But Channel 5 has nonetheless managed to increase its share of UK TV advertising by 0.2% to 6.5% this year, said UBM, whose chief executive is Labour Party insider Lord Hollick.

The report comes as commercial TV chiefs cope with a revenue downturn described by some observers as the sector's worst ever, as the growing diversity of stations, and media, increases competition for advertising budgets.

ITV's market share has declined by 2.6% to 57% over the year, UBM said.

Technology slump

United Business and Media also revealed an acceleration of the slump at its US-based CMP division, whose stable of technology publications includes the 440,000-circulation trade bible Information Week.

Advertising page volumes at CMP title plunged by 40% between July and the end of October, Friday's statement said.

A slide at the division's exhibition unit, meanwhile, has been exacerbated by a "reluctance to travel" following the 11 September strikes.

A dearth of US merger, acquisition and flotation activity after the attacks also undermined trade at UBM's information unit, PR Newswire.

But the unit has since reported a recovery, and, in Europe, is progressing a drive to tap the market for distributing official company announcements, a sector facing continuing deregulation.

Difficult times

Overall, UBM has managed a "satisfactory performance in an exceptionally tough year", Lord Hollick said.

And rating agency Standard & Poor's on Friday sweetened its outlook on UBM from "negative" to "stable".

Share investors, however, were less optimistic, sending UBM shares down 11% to 454p on Friday.

The shares in October closed at 342p, technically their lowest level for nine years, although a shake-up at the firm in recent years has limited the value of historical comparisons.

UBM has sold off a series of operations, including Express Newspaper, to focus largely on the business-to-business market, and a year ago changed its name from United News & Media.

See also:

25 Oct 01 | Business
ITV Digital defies sceptics
25 Jun 01 | Business
ITV faces worst ever ad slump
25 Apr 01 | Business
Will ITV website capture the net?
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