Bell Globemedia adds up CTV gains

Third quarter revenue grew 8.4%

MONTREAL — Bell Globemedia, which owns the CTV Network, reported strong financial results thanks to boffo ratings and strong advertising revenue at the Canuck web.

Revenue at Bell Globemedia grew 8.4% to C$296 million ($226 million) in the third quarter, up from $208 million in the same period last year.

The nine-month revenues for Bell Globemedia — which also owns a slew of specialty TV channels and the Globe and Mail newspaper — were $755 million, compared with $696 million for the year-earlier period.

Television advertising revenue increased by 22%, mainly as a result of high ratings at CTV and the general strength of the TV advertising market in Canada. CTV had 19 of the 20 most-watched shows in Canada this summer and scored the best ratings ever for a CTV-produced show with its “Canadian Idol.”

Bell Globemedia’s financial results were released Wednesday along with the overall results of parent company BCE (Bell Canada Enterprises) of Montreal. BCE, which has telecom and broadcast interests, reported revenue of $3.7 billion and cash flow of $1.5 billion, essentially flat from the year before.

Cash flow in the quarter for Bell Globemedia was $27 million, up from $13 million a year earlier. Cash flow for the nine months was $114 million, compared with $82 million the previous year.

BCE satellite service Bell Expressvu added 17,000 subscribers in the quarter to reach 1.35 million. There were 45,000 net additions in the third quarter last year. BCE attributed the comparative drop to the general slowdown in the digital TV market in Canada.

Revenue from Bell Expressvu in the quarter was $147 million, up from $119 million in the third quarter last year. Nine-month revenue was $428 million compared with $353 million the previous year.

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