U.K. broadcaster ITV’s annual results for 2021 were announced Thursday and the picture is rosy.

Total external revenue was up 24% to £3.4 billion ($4.6 billion), up from COVID-hit 2020’s £2.7 billion . ITV Studios total revenues grew 28% to £1.7 billion, up from 2020’s £1.3 billion and now stands just 2% below the heights of 2019. ITV Studios external revenue was up 30% at £1.1 billion, compared to 2020’s £903 million.

Total revenue from the group’s media and entertainment business was up 21% at £2.2 billion, up from 2020’s £1.8 billion, with total advertising revenue up 24%, the highest in ITV’s history within which video on demand advertising was up 41%.

Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, and amortization (EBITA) was up 42% at £813 million up from 2020’s £573 million. This was driven by the strong recovery in the advertising market, resumption of productions post COVID and tight cost control, with £37 million of permanent overhead cost savings in the year, ITV said.

Carolyn McCall, ITV chief executive, said: “ITV delivered an outstanding financial performance in 2021 with total external revenue growth of 24% and adjusted EPS [earnings per share] growth of 40%, fuelled by strong performance in both our divisions. ITV Studios has enjoyed both ratings and critical success and currently has around 500 programmes in production in the UK and internationally. Media and entertainment kept viewers and advertisers alike happy with a compelling slate of entertainment shows and dramas and must watch sport across ITV’s channels and streaming.”

“The successful execution of the first phase of our More Than TV strategy puts us in a strong financial and creative position, from which to launch the next phase – ITV’s digital acceleration, to supercharge our streaming business,” McCall added.

The “Love Island” broadcaster also revealed that ITVX, the first integrated AVOD/SVOD platform in the U.K., will launch in the fourth quarter of 2022. Viewers will have access to 15,000 hours of content for free at launch in an advertising funded tier or can opt for a subscription service which provides all that content ad-free and in addition provides thousands more hours of British boxsets from BritBox and other partners’ content. ITV will now adopt a digital first windowing strategy – premiering much of its new content first on ITVX and subsequently six to nine months later on ITV linear channels.

ITV’s digital businesses continued growing. BritBox U.K. has 733,000 subscriptions, up over 45% year-on-year and BritBox International has more than 2.4 million subscriptions, up over 50%. The service will launch in the Nordics in the first half of 2022, with further roll out planned. ITV aims to have 10 to 12 million international subscribers by 2030, the broadcaster said.

BritBox U.K. showed a £61 million loss, but this is “in line with our guidance of £55 million to £60 million,” ITV said.

“With the success of ITV Hub, ITV Hub Plus, Planet V and BritBox we see an exciting opportunity to at least double our digital revenues to £750 million by 2026,” McCall said. “At its heart will be ITVX – the first integrated AVOD/SVOD streaming platform in the U.K. It will be a seamless viewer experience with a digital first content and windowing strategy and significant content investment providing weekly premieres and over 15,000 hours of content at launch. This will enable ITV to double streaming viewing, double monthly active users, double subscribers and deliver valuable addressable advertising inventory at scale.”

The ITV Hub brand will be discontinued once ITVX launches and the service’s 35 million registered users will be migrated over to the new service, McCall said during an earnings call following the release of the results. There will be 20 FAST (free ad-supported streaming TV services) channels on ITVX at launch. ITVX will cost £45 million in initial set up costs in 2022 and a further £150 million in content costs in 2023, McCall said, adding that the costs would be recouped from revenue by 2026. BritBox, a service that ITV operates with the BBC, will remain a separate brand but will be available as part of the ITVX paid subscription service in the U.K.

During the call, McCall also confirmed that ITV has discontinued all new sales to Russia and that the broadcaster has demanded that Russia stop broadcasting ITV shows.

Operating profit was up 46% to £519 million up from 2020’s £356 million and statutory profit before tax was up 48% to £480 million up from 2020’s £325 million. The broadcaster has total liquidity of £1.5 billion, up from 2020’s £1.4 billion and net debt has fallen to £414 million from 2020’s £545 million.

Total content spend for ITV is expected to be around £1.23 billion including BritBox content spend and an additional £20 million of content spend for ITVX.