Granada Group, the British TV and leisure conglomerate, saw pre-tax profits rise 28% to T68.1 million ($ 103 million) for the six months ended March 27.

The company’s wholly owned ITV station, Granada TV, increased its profits by 19% to T21.2 million, largely thanks to cuts in overhead.

Sales for the TV operation rose just 0.6% to T138.8 million.

Overall group sales were T640 million, up only marginally from the same period last year.

The new ITV license period started Jan. 1, halfway through the six-month period, resulting in a heavier burden upon Granada TV of payments to the government for the right to broadcast.

The company also owns 13.5% of British Sky Broadcasting, the multichannel satellite TV service, which is on track to produce “significant operating profits” this year.

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