Ebay reviews media work
EBay is set to commence a full review of its £15m media account, having signed up Carat for a £1.2m Christmas project. The account was previously held by PHD, which parted company with eBay in February after it moved the majority of its ad spend into digital and below-the-line. The formal review will begin next year.
Zenith scoops cereal task
ZenithOptimedia has landed the £2m media brief for cereal brand Jordans, having taken the business from MPG without a pitch. It will be consolidated into ZenithOptimedia, which handles Jordans' majority owner ABF's media planning and buying business.
Santander in UK review
Spanish financial services giant Santander has started a review of its £32m UK media planning and buying, currently handled by Carat. As revealed by Mediaweek.co.uk on 6 November, the review will cover media for Abbey National, Alliance & Leicester and Bradford & Bingley's savings business. Carat has been invited to repitch for the business, while a shortlist of rival agencies is being developed with a remit to cover traditional and online media, including business-to-business and directories.
Vizeum sails off with P&O
P&O parent Carnival Group Cruises has dropped Starcom in favour of Vizeum to handle its £12m UK media planning and buying business. The Carnival Group Cruises' multi-brand account includes P&O Cruises, Princess Cruises, Ocean Village and Cunard. The move ends a six-year relationship with incumbent Starcom.
MEC wins MBNA account
MBNA has awarded its £14m pan-European media planning and buying account to WPP's Mediaedge:cia after a final battle against digital incumbent BLM Quantum. The appointment of MEC concludes a protracted 10-month pitch process, which saw offline incumbent ZenithOptimedia, Universal McCann and Carat dropped along the way.
White is Five MD
Five's commercial chief, Mark White, has been promoted to managing director. The appointment follows White's six-month period as interim chief executive. He joined Five in 1996 as sales controller, becoming deputy sales director in 2000 and then executive director of sales in 2004, overseeing the launch of the broadcaster's digital channels, Five US and Five Life, in 2006.
EC revises state aid rules
The European Commission has published revised rules on the public funding of broadcasters to ensure commercial broadcasters are not disadvantaged from such state aid. With digital switchover looming in most European countries, many broadcasters require public funding to offset declining ad revenues.
TV viewing on the up
The number of people watching TV has increased this year. According to Thinkbox, total viewing on all TV channels, including the BBC, rose 3.6% during the year to September.
Sky expands VoD offer
Sky is extending its VoD presence, allowing people for the first time to take online subscriptions to its various TV channels without having to take its satellite TV service. The new Sky Player service will offer access to some of Sky's most popular channel brands, as well as channels from other broadcasters. Full details on channel line-up, pricing and launch date will be announced later.
ITV ad revenue dips ...
ITV's ad revenue dropped 2.5% to £1.04bn in the first nine months of 2008, as the broadcaster unveiled plans to merge its online and broadcast businesses under TV boss Peter Fincham. Jeff Henry, managing director of ITV Consumer, will stand down once the merger has been completed.
... and so has Five's
Five's TV ad revenue fell year on year during the first nine months of 2008, as owner RTL Group said the total UK TV ad market fell by 3.3%. RTL Group would not reveal the size of the decline in Five's TV ad revenue, but it is thought the decline is smaller than the overall UK market decline of 3.3%.
Orange IPTV plan delayed
Orange's plan to roll out an IPTV service is on hold as the France Telecom-owned operator reviews its plans. Orange has been trialling IPTV technology with customers in several parts of the country. However, the firm is believed to have experienced technical difficulties implementing the service across its fixed-line network.
STV airtime sales down
STV Group's national airtime sales were down 7% in Q3, in line with the ITV network that is responsible for its sales. However, regional airtime sales were up 13%, according to its interim statement.
Virgin subscribers rise
Virgin Media said it expanded its pay-TV subscriber base by 37,800 in Q3, to end the period with nearly 3.6 million subscribers.
Murdoch's second assault
Rupert Murdoch is to introduce his second major cost-cutting drive across News Corporation's UK national newspaper division. He said News Corporation will impose stringent cost-cutting measures across all its businesses, including the implementation of "leaner operations" in the UK and Australia leading to further job losses.
FT.com given new look
The Financial Times has rebranded FT.com in line with its print title. The new look homepage now carries the FT's distinctive pink colour. Other new features include a top 10 of must-read stories.
Mojo Radio tunes out
Bauer Media has decided to shut its national digital radio station, Mojo Radio, after five years on air. The station is transmitted via Freeview, BSkyB and online, but will cease broadcasting on 30 November. Bauer partly blamed the decision on the "rising costs of broadcasting on Freeview and Sky".
JCDecaux posts ad fall
JCDecaux's UK division posted a decline in revenue in Q3, with UK billboard and street furniture revenue down and transport revenue flat. JCDecaux said its UK transport division's organic revenue growth, which excludes the impact of acquisitions and currency fluctuations, was flat in the third quarter. It added that the UK market for street furniture "remained difficult" and the billboard division "suffered from weak demand". A spokesman said organic revenue for both was down year on year.
AOL ad revenue slips AOL's global ad revenue fell by $33m, or 6%, year on year in Q3, as the Time Warner firm felt the impact of the economic downturn. AOL's revenue decreased 17%, or $207m, to $1bn, due to a 26% decline in subscription revenue and 6% decrease in ad revenue. The decline in subscription revenue reflects a decrease in US AOL subscribers, following AOL's decision to offer its e-mail and other products free of charge.
Forum to develop digital
A forum of experts, led by former ITV commercial chief Ian McCulloch, have been appointed to a panel convened by former Ofcom chief Stephen Carter aimed at boosting the digital and creative industries. The forum has been appointed to guide the work of The Digital Britain Report, which aims to develop a plan to progress the UK's digital economy.
YouTube eyes full content
YouTube, the video-sharing website, has struck landmark deals with MGM and FremantleMedia to offer full-length TV shows and films. MGM will initially launch a YouTube channel named Impact, which offers MGM action films such as Rocky, Ronin and The Magnificent Seven. FremantleMedia, meanwhile, will offer certain shows exclusively via YouTube.
In The News: Virgin Media and BSkyB confirm a deal on channel carriage
Virgin Media has confirmed an agreement to pay £38m to BSkyB each year to regain carriage of its basic tier channels, such as Sky 1 and Sky Sports News, as exclusively revealed in Media Week (30 September, page 3).
After 20 months of often public fighting and a lengthy legal battle, the two have struck a deal for the carriage of the other's channels on their respective platforms.
As part of a deal, which will bring hit shows such as 24 and Lost back to Virgin Media subscribers, BSkyB will pay Virgin Media £24m annually to carry Virgin channels such as Virgin1.
The absence of Sky's channels lost Virgin Media thousands of subscribers. The reduced distribution of its channels cost BSkyB millions of pounds in lost ad revenue.
"It would be like trying to drive down the road of innovation with the parking brake on"
Google's legal chief, David Drummond, insisting the company will continue to look for new growth avenues despite terminating a proposed deal to sell ads on Yahoo search listing.
STAT TO STEAL
9% - Projected year-on-year decline in ITV's TV ad revenue in Q4