Week 38: 2011 might be the year the media market goes back on growth

Next year might the first for the media market to go back on growth, after the sector shrank for the past two years. S.O. Vîntu alleges persons close to President Traian Băsescu asked him to give up part of his share in the Realitatea TV news channel. The new public television manager tries to cut on losses and hike viewership. Adevărul Holding to go into the television market and go publicly listed abroad.

The Romanian media market is estimated to grow by 4 % in 2011, to a total of 360 million Euro, the head of the media agency MEC Bogdan Prajisteanu said to Financiarul. In 2009 the market shrunk by 38% from a year before, while the year-on-year reduction stayed at 9% in 2010. The television business is least affected this year by the economic crisis, with advertising losses at 6%. The sector’s 2011 growth is estimated at 5%. The print business will go down by 29% in 2010, and by 6% in 2011, to reach 30 million Euro. The online sector is growing in 2010, while the radio business goes down by 11% in 2010, and up again next year, by 4%.

The owner of Realitatea-Catavencu media group, Sorin Ovidiu Vîntu, alleged President Traian Băsescu was behind people asking him to relegate part of his ownership in the media group, Mediafax writes. Vîntu also said Băsescu asked for the support of his media group in 2007, when Băsescu was subjected to the impeachment procedures. Some commentators said this could explain the pro-Băsescu stance of the Realitatea TV station during that time.

Băsescu replied that “You may be mistaken to oppose the statements an indicted person makes, to those made by the president of the Romanian state,” according to Gandul. Vîntu was released from custody by a Court of Appeal ruling, which did not approve the 29-day warrant prosecutors issued against Vîntu. He was charged for helping a convicted criminal avoid justice, namely sending money abroad to Nicolae Popa, who was convicted for his part in the FNI pyramidal scheme.

The Romanian public television (TVR) was in the red by 18 million Euro, by mid-2010, according to HotNews.ro. The TVR president Alexandru Lăzescu stated he wanted to do away with the wasting of the money and start off with re-negotiating some of the contracts TVR is a party to. However, he admitted this was not a long-term solution. TVR is in the red since 2006, with advertising revenues going down to 10 million Euro, from 20 million Euro in 2007-2008. The TVR market share stayed at 38% in 2000, while now it stays at around 7%.

Adevărul Holding (AH) will expand its business with a television and radio network of some 40 local stations. The first such stations are to go on air by the end of the year, AH general director Peter Imre told Pagina de Media. He stated that the AH media group either buys out existing stations or goes into partnership with them. Another change in the group’s business Imre announced was that Media Point will take over the sell of advertisement to AH. The majority stake in Media Point belongs to the Odyssey agency, which in turn it belongs to Dinu Patriciu, the owner of AH. Imre said all changes made in the later months aim at getting the AH listed by 2013 on the London, Luxembourg or Frankfurt stock exchanges.

Review provided by KMP Translations

  1. Marian Stavaroiu Reply

    Ce-mi place mie la nebunie e ca domnul Lazescu de la TVR confirma o banuiala pe care o avem cu totii de multa vreme: banii pe care ii platim pe abonamente se fura prin contracte umflate cu pompa.

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