M6 delays news launch as ads fall

Ad ban at FT fails to lift commercial networks

Hit by France’s steep TV ad downturn, Gallic broadcaster M6 has delayed the launch of a planned 8 p.m. newscast until the fall.

The move comes as a report by U.S. media analyst TNS Media Intelligence confirmed a drastic plunge in ad revs last month at Gaul’s major broadcasters.

M6 had intended to extend its six-minute 8 p.m. news summary to 20 minutes to kick off its primetime sked.

The web had hoped to pick up extra advertising during the news show, possibly taking advantage of firms migrating from pubcaster France Televisions, which has been banned from carrying ads in primetime by the government.

The newscast is now set to launch Sept. 7.

Its delay is the latest sign of ad rev pain at Gaul’s two big commercial nets. Neither M6 nor TF1 have seen much upside from France Televisions’ ad ban, TNS’ monthly AdEx Report suggested Tuesday.

Year to year, Gallic TV ad revs overall fell 6.6% in January and 16.1% at the national terrestrial broadcasters, TNS added.

A study by ad research company Yacast Media, published earlier in February, reported a 5.3% drop in January ad revs at M6 and a 17.6% plunge at TF1.

Both broadly maintained audience share in January, with 26.7% and 11% respectively, according to aud research company Mediametrie.

But ad agencies appear to be channeling former France Televisions ad spend toward the country’s fast-growing digital terrestrial networks, targeting more moneyed auds. In January, Gallic DTT nets enjoyed a year-on-year 85.4% rise in ad revs, TNS estimated.