BIA Sees Downward Dip for TV Station Revenue

BIA has released a report that shows revenue in the television industry will take a dramatic fall below the $20 billion mark starting this year. According to BIA Advisory Services’ first edition of its quarterly “Investing In Television Market Report,” after six years with industry revenue hovering between $20–22 billion, 2009 is expected to end at an even $17 billion in revenues, a –21.2 percent drop in two years from 2007’s $21.5 billion.

BIA’s data found that several markets in 2008 showed surprising positive revenue streams due to fierce presidential and congressional campaigns in battleground states. This enabled a –6.6 percent revenue decline by the end of the year.

“Since 2003 TV revenues have held steady but are now beginning a dramatic downward shift. This corroborates our calls for transformation as the only path to expansion for the industry,” said Mark R. Fratrik, vice president, BIA Advisory Services. “This will come from cross-platform growth and real energies put into finding local advertising revenues available through mobile and online advertising.”

Analysts at BIA forecast a slight positive revenue increase in 2010 of .6 percent, attributed to an election year and a recovering economy. Preliminary forecasting expects a dip into the negatives again in 2011 before a solid return to positive revenue streams in 2012. That year is when BIA research for the NAB FASTROAD project estimates that an additional $1.1 billion in ad revenues alone could come to local television stations.

BIA will focus on this topic further during its conference, “Winning Media Strategies,” May 20–22 in Washington, D.C.