Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment

Public Service Broadcasting: Discussion (Resumed).

5:00 pm

Ms Breda O'Keeffe:

Everybody is claiming that Brexit will impact on their business. TG4 has a seen a real impact on its commercial revenue, particularly in the second half of this year. In terms of how it is impacting us, practically over 55% of our commercial income comes from television advertising. Almost 50% of our top 20 advertisers are UK based, including Unilever, Proctor and Gamble, P&G etc.. When it comes to their bottom lines and financial constraints, which have been impacted by Brexit, they are pulling back on marketing. The other impact is a practical one in that sterling buys fewer euros.

The UK companies will continue to invest the same amount in sterling in marketing. To answer the question directly, we are seeing a marked difference in commercial revenue in the second half of the year than in the first. That will feed into the financials for the year.

I endorse what Senator Tim Lombard said. He hopes the proceeds from any disposal of land in Donnybrook would not be used to plug RTE's finances but would be used for capital investment purposes. I agree and would go so far as to say it would be reckless if that was actually to happen. That makes the case for an increase in public funding or looking again at the licence fee model to generate additional public funding for us and other broadcasters.