Norwegian media economy 2013
Profitable newspapers, a strengthened position for commercial television, increasing revenue for advertising in online newspapers but also major cost reductions. These are some of the characteristics of the Norwegian media development, as described in a report on media economy by the Norwegian Media Authority.
The Norwegian media industry is profitable. The Norwegian Media Authority has analyzed the financial situation of newspapers, television and radio, and notes that in 2013 these news media had a turnover of 26 billion NOK and an operating profit of 1.2 billion NOK. However, sales and earnings have declined since 2012, and there is great variation between the different media channels and companies.
Norwegian newspaper publishers, the country’s biggest media players, saw reduced ad revenue from their paper issues in 2013. While ad revenue from net has increased, this could not compensate for the decline in print. Nonetheless, the Norwegian newspapers are profitable, largely explained by cost cuts.
Digital revenues are the most important for the economy of the newspapers sold in single copies, whose advertisers have greatly switched from paper to online. Of the single-copy newspapers’ advertising revenues in 2013, online revenues accounted for 60 per cent and paper for 40 per cent. For most other Norwegian newspapers, digital ad revenue represents about 15 per cent of total ad revenue.
Digital circulation revenue tripled from 2012 to 2013 but is still small, accounting for 2.5 per cent of newspaper companies’ total revenue. For printed newspapers, advertising and circulation revenue each represent around 50 percent of the total. For digital newspapers, ad revenue stood for 91 per cent and circulation revenue for nine per cent of the total.
TV and radio
The TV and radio industry’s share of the media is increasing, and in 2013 accounted for 45 per cent of overall media sales. It is mainly commercial television that has grown significantly in recent years, due partly to expanded distribution capabilities, as both the digital terrestrial network and an expansion of cable and fiber have made room for more TV channels and content.
Advertising is the commercial television industry’s most important source of revenue, with 2013 showing the highest television ad revenue ever. Distribution and pay-TV revenue are also growing, and are becoming increasingly important to companies. (However, due to changes in ownership, restructuring of organizations and so on, it is difficult to get a comprehensive picture of the development.) Despite the good economic figures for the TV industry, the result in 2013 was weaker than the prior year, due mainly to higher operating costs.
Commercial national radio (P4, Radio Norway) was also profitable in 2013, but with a weaker result than the previous year. The main reason for this was costs related to the establishment and operation of digital broadcasting (DAB) in Norway.
About the report: The Norwegian Media Authority publishes annual reports on the Norwegian media industry with a focus on newspapers, radio and television. The latest report, Økonomi in Norwegian medievirksomheter 2009-2013, has analyzed the following groups: Schibsted, Amedia, Polaris Media, Aller (Dagbladet), NHST Media Group, Mentor Media, NRK, MTG, Egmont (TV2) and SBS Discovery. The reports are only available in Norwegian.
BY: EVA HARRIE