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How Canadian local TV stations fared in 2014

MUMBAI: Canada’s local television stations continued to operate within a challenging advertising market. Private stations brought in $117.1 million less in advertising revenue, which contributed to a 7.2 per cent decrease in overall revenues, from $1.94 billion in 2013 to $1.8 billion in 2014.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has released statistical and financial information on Canadian local television stations for the broadcast year that ended 31 August 2014.

In 2014, private stations invested $619.3 million in the creation of programmes made by Canadians, including local news and drama series, and employed over 5,900 people. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation/Société Radio-Canada (CBC/SRC) invested an additional $789.8 million in this type of content. In total, local television stations spent more than $1.4 billion to fund the creation of new Canadian programmes for viewers.

For its part, CBC/SRC reported $474.6 million in advertising revenues in 2014, a 43 per cent increase from the $331.1 million generated in 2013. This increase is largely attributable to the broadcast of the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, the FIFA Soccer World Cup in Brazil, and an entire season of National Hockey League games.

Each year, the CRTC compiles financial data on Canadian broadcasting and telecommunications sectors to produce a series of reports. The CRTC will soon publish the financial results for cable and satellite companies, specialty, pay, pay-per-view and video-on-demand services, and AM and FM radio. Following the publication of these reports, the CRTC will issue its annual Communications Monitoring Report.

These annual reports help interested parties to stay informed about the state of the Canadian communication industry and to participate in the CRTC’s public consultations.

Quick facts

  • Private local television stations saw their revenues drop by 7.2%, from $1.94 billion in 2013 to $1.8 billion in 2014. Expenses went from $1.85 billion in 2013 to $1.84 billion in 2014, a slight decrease of 0.4%. Profits before interest and taxes (PBIT) declined from -$2.3 million to -$138.7 million, and the PBIT margin decreased from -0.1 per cent to -7.7 per cent.
  • Investments by private local television stations in Canadian-made programs increased by 2.3 per cent, from $605.4 million in 2013 to $619.3 million in 2014.
  • Private local television stations invested $60.4 million for drama series, $5.3 million for feature films, $84.7 million for general interest programs, $361.1 million for news programs, $6.3 million for long-form documentaries, $29.3 million for other information programmes, $22.3 million for music and variety shows, $1.1 million for sports programming, $19 million for game shows, $25.5 million for reality TV shows, $3.7 million for awards shows and $0.5 million for other programs.
  • As part of these investments, local television stations paid $138.6 million to Canadian independent producers.
  • Revenues from the sale of local advertising declined from $351.2 million in 2013 to $333.6 million in 2014, a five per cent decrease. Private local television stations also experienced a 7.8 per cent decline in national advertising revenues, from $1.28 billion in 2013 to $1.18 billion in 2014.
  • In 2014, CBC/SRC reported advertising revenues of $474.6 million, which represented a 43.3 per cent increase from the $331.1 million generated the previous year.
  • CBC/SRC’s programming expenditures totalled $810.8 million, 97 per cent of which was spent on Canadian programmes.