Timing is everything in business and the new crew at ITV, former GCap Radio CEO Fru Hazlitt has just joined Adam Crozier & co to replace Rupert Howell, must be thanking their lucky stars and looking forward to their bonuses.
WPP media buyer Group M has just produced a new forecast of UK ad prospects claiming that TV revenue will soar 11.6 per cent this year with spot rates whooshing up 14.6 per cent as supply outstrips demand for the first time in years. UK ad expenditure as a whole will rise 4.2 per cent it says.
So is it back to the days when you didn’t need to sell ITV, just take the orders?
Such forecasts should be treated with a degree of caution though, although this one looks on the button.
In December Group M forecast that UK adspend in 2010 would be flat with television actually contracting by 0.2 per cent. So what has happened in the interim? The World Cup, for example, was still slated to take place this summer back in the distant days of December 2009.
It does make you wonder what forecasts are worth. For the record Group M thinks that radio will rise six per cent, online 7.1 per cent, national press reduce by two per cent and outdoor rise by seven per cent.
True believers in such forecasts should note that UK ad expenditure is slated to reduce a bit in 2011, to just three per cent.
As for Ms Hazlitt she deserves a bit of luck having taken over at GCap just when the company came under siege from Global Radio, which subsequently bought it and installed its own management.
Her job at ITV, ‘managing director’ of commercial and online (managing director has become a meaningless courtesy title these days) seems to mean boosting ITV’s online revenues which she thinks can have a ‘transformational’ effect on the company.
She may be right of course. Others think that ITV should concentrate on being a TV company.