The First Channel remains the most watched TV station in Russia, but NTV is now the most profitable.
According to data published by Cableman and Interfax, The First Channel’s net profit prose from R3.1 billion (€70.37 million) to R3.6 billion in 2008. At the same time, its revenues were up by 20% to R24.97 billion.
NTV, however, posted revenues of R17.46 billion in 2008, while its net profit amounted to R5.12 billion.
VGTRK meanwhile saw its profits fall from R1.35 billion to R514 million in 2008 despite seeing revenues rise by 10.5% to R24.5 billion.
Cableman points out that the recession is expected to impact strongly on broadcasters this year, with ad revenue already falling by 29% in the first quarter.
(On the picture the NTV studios in Moscow; photo courtesy of Euphonix)