STV shuts down STV2 channel as it invests in digital

Galtero Lara
May 16, 2018

Scotland's leading commercial broadcaster has confirmed it will close one of its channels and shed jobs across its news team as part of a group-wide restructure.

Another 25 jobs will be lost and a further £1m in annual savings made with the closure of the loss-making STV2 channel at the end of June, as STV shifts content investment online and sells local TV assets to That's Media.

STV also took the opportunity to confirm the launch of a £5m advertising growth fund billed as a tool to help maximise its share of the advertising market as well as agreeing its first ever content partnership for the STV Player catch-up service which will include a new ad-free subscription option.

The new organisational structure will create three distinct divisions across broadcast, digital and production, each with its own managing director.

The move will deliver savings of £1 million a year.

Simon Pitts, STV chief executive, said: "As a result of the challenging economics of local television and anticipated increased competition from BBC Scotland, we have taken the hard decision to close our loss-making STV2 channel to focus our future content investment on STV and the STV Player".

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The STV News 2020 plan will, the broadcaster said, ensure it remains the best news service in Scotland while delivering significant cost savings.

"However, given how quickly news consumption is changing it is vital that STV evolves to stay competitive, and we are therefore launching a comprehensive change programme - STV News 2020 - that will see us invest in skills, technology and digital as well as delivering cost savings".

Mr Pitts described the resturcutre as a "positive vision" that would "reestablish the company as a creative force in Scotland and beyond".

Meanwhile, the STV plans a £15 million worth of investment for original content, with a focus on formats and returnable series. I'd like to thank the STV2 team for everything they have achieved over the last 4 years. "We will exploit STV's unique producer-broadcaster status to attract the best creative talent and showcase new formats and ideas for the United Kingdom and global markets".

"We will exploit STV's unique producer-broadcaster status to attract the best creative talent and showcase new formats and ideas for the United Kingdom and global markets".

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