UTV Ireland to take in nearly €3.5m less than expected
UTV Media has reduced its revenue forecast for its new Irish TV station by £2.5m (€3.46m) in a trading update published today for the three months to the end of March.
The Northern Irish company said that UTV Ireland has had a "slower start to the year" since its January launch.
It said that there is "considerable volatility" in the station's performance, adding that "given the volatility we think it would be appropriate to reduce our revenue forecasts for 2015 by £2.5m."
However, it said that it is still very early in the life of UTV Ireland and claimed that the "strategic logic of UTV Ireland in creating leading television operations throughout Ireland remains clear."
As a whole for UTV Media group revenue was €29.7m, up 7pc.
UTV Media added that while Radio Ireland revenues were unchanged in the three months to March on a constant currency basis, they were down 10pc including exchange movement.
In the UK radio market, revenues were unchanged in the three months to March. TalkSPORT's revenue, including talkSPORT International and Sport Magazine, was down 1pc due to the strong comparison from the World Cup build-up in 2014, it added.
The comnpany said it expected second-quarter revenue at its largest division Radio GB to fall 16pc from a year earlier, a period which saw the 2014 FIFA World Cup build-up.
UTV, which went 'on air' as Ulster Television in 1959 after Sir Laurence Olivier delivered the first official broadcast, said revenue at its talkSPORT radio station would fall 25pc in the second quarter.
Second-quarter revenue at the broadcaster's television business, which accounted for about a third of sales last year, would rise 37pc UTV said.
(additional reporting Reuters)