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CBC ad revenue down 53% in the past five years

The CBC receives $1.2 billion from the Canadian taxpayer every year.

CBC TV’s advertising revenue has shrunk 53% over the past five years as the state broadcaster’s audience continues to shrink.

Blacklock’s Reporter found that in the first six months of 2019, TV ad revenues totalled $90.9 million, a decrease from $92.8 million in the previous year. CBC TV’s revenues today are a far cry from the $192.2 CBC TV earned in the same period of 2014.

“Our objective is not to make money but to provide a service and fulfil our mandate,” Radio Canada Executive VP Michel Bissonnette said earlier this year.

“We reinvent ourselves every year to try and find new ways to do things because we have to offer more, but with a smaller budget. So that requires visionary talent.”

The CBC receives $1.2 billion from the Canadian taxpayer every year.

Last year, the total audience fell to an average of just 269,000 people, a 14% decline from the previous year. In November CBC had to cut 35 jobs, a majority of which were based in its Toronto headquarters. 

CBC Radio stopped selling advertising in 2016 after years of abysmal earnings. In 1975, CBC radio predicted it could earn $24.3 million per year with advertisements. The most it ever earned in one year was $1.4 million.

“CBC operates in a manner that is unconstrained by the realities every other media organization in the country has to deal with. If it is to remain relevant, there should be buy-in from advertisers,” said True North fellow Andrew Lawton. 

“Instead, Canadian taxpayers are forced to subsidize a service they don’t want. This is just wrong.”

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