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ITV plc Reveals Revenue Up 6%

The shares of ITV (LSE: ITV) increased by 2p to 188p during early trade this morning after the commercial broadcaster said its revenues during the nine months to 30 September had advanced by 6%.

The FTSE 100 member confirmed its top line had climbed from £1,573m to £1,664m, assisted mostly by non-advertising sales improving by 11% to £801m. The channel’s net advertising revenue gained 1% to £1,087m.

ITV claimed its audience share during the first nine months of the year was 23%, which compared to 22.2% during the comparable period of 2012. ITV’s share of commercial broadcasters was 38.4%, up from 38.2%.

The blue chip also disclosed net debt of £85m and a pension deficit of £558m.

Adam Crozier, ITV’s chief executive, said:

ITV is now a stronger and more balanced business and as we move into 2014 we will continue to see growth across the company.

We expect good growth in ITV Studios, primarily driven by our recent acquisitions. The television advertising market is showing signs of improvement, which will benefit the core Broadcast business, and we expect to deliver double digit revenue growth in Online, Pay & Interactive.

Prior to today, City experts reckoned ITV’s 2013 results would show earnings up 14% to 10.5p per share and a dividend up 28% to 3.3p per share.

Following this morning’s price reaction, the shares may trade on a possible P/E of 18 and yield a potential 1.8%.

Of course, whether that rating, today’s nine-month figures as well as the wider prospects for commercial television all combine to make ITV a ‘buy’ right now is something only you can decide.

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> Maynard does not own any share mentioned in this article.