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Reports Lay Bare Gender Pay and Bonus Gaps in British TV

ITV revealed Tuesday that its male employees earn, on average, 16.4% more than female employees – the latest British media and entertainment company to publicly acknowledge its gender pay gap. The BBC, Channel 4 and ITN have also reported figures showing that, across the board, men collect significantly bigger paychecks and bonuses on average than their female counterparts.

All companies in Britain with more than 250 employees are now legally bound to report, in broad terms, what they pay the men and women in their ranks. The average gender pay gap in the U.K. is about 14%.

ITV and Channel 4, Britain’s two biggest commercial broadcasters, have both just installed women as their CEOs – Carolyn McCall and Alex Mahon, respectively – but both organizations have gender pay disparities to address. ITV’s report Tuesday revealed a 16.4% gap in average pay and a 49.4% gap in bonuses. At Channel 4, men earn 28.6% more on average than women and receive 47.6% more in bonuses.

ITV, which employs more women than men, ascribed the salary divide to “the makeup of our workforce, with more men than women working in the most senior or highly paid roles at ITV, and more women than men in lower paying roles.” The broadcaster has established an internal working group to look at the gender pay issue.

Mahon, who took the reins of Channel 4 late last year, said the earnings gap between men and women at her organization “makes for uncomfortable reading and I am determined to take action to address it.” She pledged to achieve a 50-50 split between men and women on Channel 4’s list of top 100 earners by 2023.

The BBC, the world’s largest pubcaster, remains under fire over its pay disparities. It was forced by the British government last summer to reveal that most of its top-earning talent are men. In its world-famous news division, there is a 6.8% gap in the earnings of its higher-paid correspondents and news readers. The overall pay gap at the BBC was 10.7%.

ITN, which makes some of Britain’s best-known news, current affairs and factual shows, last week revealed a gender pay gap of 19.6% and a whopping bonus gap of 77.2%.

A rare bright spot is Endemol Shine U.K., whose numbers showed no gap in average salaries between men and women. When it came to bonus payments, however, there was a 22% disparity.

Viacom’s Channel 5 will report figures next week. FremantleMedia is also preparing a gender pay report. The U.S. studios, most of which have extensive operations in the U.K., will also report pay data.

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