UKTV, the company which operates channels such as Gold, Yesterday and Watch, is celebrating its most successful year after record-breaking viewing puts it neck and neck with Channel 5’s full portfolio and all of Sky’s wholly-owned channels, including movies and sport, for the first time.
“UKTV’s success is because we have taken risks and experimented with our content mix, ensuring viewers needs are at the heart of everything we do. For the first time in our history we are on a par with both Sky and Channel 5’s full portfolios which is testament to the hard work of all 270 staff members based here in Hammersmith.” – UKTV’s chief financial and operations officer Jan Gooze-Zijl
In 2015 UKTV grew its share to 5.27% (from 5.08% in 2014) and as of the 26th December it delivered 9.27% SOCI (share of commercial impacts), putting it marginally ahead of the Channel 5 portfolio (9.26%) and Sky branded channels (9.25%), in a race to the finish line.
UKTV’s increased investment in original programming has contributed to the network’s record-breaking viewing in 2015, up 3.7% year on year. Official Barb data* shows that smash hit commissions Storage Hunters UK Celebrity Special and Dave Gorman Modern Life is Goodish were UKTV’s highest rating programmes of 2015, helping to propel UKTV – an independent joint venture between BBC Worldwide and Scripps Network Interactive Inc. (SNI:NY) – to its fifth consecutive year of growth. Since 2010 the network has increased its viewing share by 30%.
Christmas was cause for further celebration, with the network powering past Channel 5’s portfolio with a 6.63% share versus 5.9%, to celebrate its best festive period in the company’s history, up 11.4% year on year. Sunday 27 December broke all records and propelled UKTV to its highest daily share ever, 7.62% and the network enjoyed its most successful Boxing Day (6.69%), New Year’s Eve (6.94%) and New Year’s Day (6.91%). UKTV Play also had a very successful Christmas period with a 66% increase in app downloads in December versus November.