UTV Media suffer 90 percent profit drop

Shares in UTV Media (LON:UTV) were trading up nearly 8 percent this morning after the release of their interim results.

The TV company disclosed a sharp drop in profits, from £10 million last year to just over £1 million in the first half of this year.

UTV Chairman Richard Huntingford said in a statement:

“The challenges of establishing a new television channel are evident in these results which reflect the significant losses incurred by UTV Ireland in its first six months on air. Less evident, but not to be lost sight of, is the inherent value created by the establishment of a mainstream television channel in Europe’s fastest growing economy, with long term licesning, programme supple and infrastructure in place.”

Total group revenue rose marginally to £58.3m but group operating profits fell to £2.7m from £11.2m.

The results come six months after UTV launched Ireland, which has struggled to attract both audience and advertisers. The company have had “teething issues”, such as the re-tuning of domestic digital receivers, had further compounded the problem of audience under-delivery.

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