Why international opportunities?
For a media company of our size and scale, operating on a global
basis is the only way to ensure long-term growth. New technologies
and distribution methods mean consumers across the globe can
access, share and discuss content faster than before. That makes
for an increasingly borderless market for content and products.
are obvious targets for UK-based media companies. But as
technology progresses there are also untapped opportunities in
other global markets, which often have faster-growing economies and
entertainment sectors. Providing legal distribution of our
programmes and products can also diminish the effects of piracy and
further supports investment into original content.
Focusing on international markets also supports the BBC's fifth
public purpose, 'Bringing the UK to the world and the world to the
UK.' BBC Worldwide has a critical role to play in raising the
profile of the BBC and the UK creative industries overseas. In
addition, through our global business, BBC Worldwide can provide a
springboard for British talent outside the UK.
How are we doing it?
In recent years BBC Worldwide has been particularly focused on
driving growth in the USA and Australia. These are our biggest
growth markets, generating revenue of US$500m and Au$140m
respectively. Both markets will remain vital for future growth. But
in the past year, we have started to focus more on growth
opportunities in other territories, identifying the most favourable
markets for us and preparing to reorganise where necessary to
deliver them. We are in the process of developing market growth
strategies for countries in Asia, Western Europe, Central and
Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEEMEA) and Latin America,
informed by market knowledge and insight from senior local
recruits. These strategies are likely to be supported over time, by
a regionally focused organisation, balanced by strong global areas
Progress against targets
In 2007 we set ourselves a target of two-thirds of revenue to be
generated from outside the UK by 2012. In 2011/12, 64.3% of
headline sales was derived from outside the UK, up from 55.5% in
2010/11. As highlighted last year, growth in the UK market means we
expect to take another year to reach our target of two-thirds of
revenue from outside the UK.
The main drivers for the increase in international revenues were
the exit of BBC Magazines, a predominantly British business, the
delivery of Torchwood Series 4 by BBC Worldwide Productions,
digital growth across all areas, BBC America's performance and new
Our progress against the objectives laid out in last year's annual
review is set out across the page.