ITV Studios Boss Makes Push for More Drama, International Growth

Variety | 1/11/2019 | Stewart Clarke
Click For Photo: https://pmcvariety.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/julian-bellamy-horizontal-pic-cropped.jpg?w=700&h=393&crop=1

When ITV CEO Carolyn McCall unveiled her strategy refresh late last year, content was one of three key pillars. That put ITV Studios firmly in the spotlight, and its boss, Julian Bellamy, is the exec tasked with delivering growth across the production business.

International expansion is in the cards, but on the home front, ITV Studios is coming off a banner year. As Bellamy speaks to Variety at ITV’s new digs in London’s Holborn district, where the company moved after vacating its previous home on the banks of the Thames, ratings figures have just landed.

Shows - Production - Companies - Part - ITV

Five shows made by production companies that are part of the ITV Studios stable – “Bodyguard,” “I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here,” “Vera,” “Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway,” and long-running soap “Coronation Street” – were among the top 10 most-watched shows in the U.K. in 2018.

The list doesn’t include sun-and-fun reality program “Love Island,” which was a breakout hit for ITV2, a smaller network. But that show will be remade in the U.S. for CBS in 2019 after having already gone into Australia, Germany, and Sweden and others.

Year - Hours - Bellamy - Fruits - Lot

“It’s been a terrific year. We are making more hours than we have before,” Bellamy says. “The fruits of a lot of work are beginning to come through.”

M&A has been a quick and obvious way to bolster output and financials – ITV Studios now has more than 50 production banners under its wing – but Bellamy notes that underlying growth has been running at about 7% annually. As for the deal-making, he pinpoints the £355 million ($450 million) acquisition of Talpa Media in 2015, which brought “The Voice” into the fold, as a key moment.

Revenue - Something - % - Division - Couple

“Revenue has grown by something like 80% in the international division in the last couple of years or so, and a lot of...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Variety
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