The Royal Wedding Scuppers ITV's money making plans

Advertising giants keen to cash in on this year’s most hotly anticipated event were disappointed to hear that Ofcom, the broadcasting watchdog, have slapped a ‘no ad’ ban on ITV.

This change in schedule is a huge disappointment to ITV, who could have potentially raised additional revenue to the tune of £8 million pounds.

Ofcom’s code bans commercial breaks during formal royal ceremonies which they define as ‘an occasion of which the Sovereign or members of the British Royal Family enjoying the prefix of “Royal Highness” are the centre’.

Prime time TV has always been lucrative for both broadcasters and advertisers – with a captive audience of millions being enticed by the products on offer.  During the X-Factor, the battle is fierce with advertising agencies paying up to £250,000 for a 30 second slot. To break that down, that’s over £8000 per second!

But ITV is not alone when it comes to missing out.

There’s no doubt that the Royal Wedding (and the renewed interest in the Monarchy) will give the UK a much needed boost from tourism, but with the current fragile state of our economy, can we really afford to take a five billion pound hit?

When the Royal Wedding was announced, so was the news of an extra Bank Holiday. The prospect of consecutive 4 day weekends left workers rejoicing and employers thinking about the impact it would have on their businesses.   

The extra Bank Holiday, tied in with the Easter weekend and May Bank Holiday, means businesses will only open for three days between April 22nd and May 2nd.

Small businesses are expected to be worst hit, with many fearing staff will call in sick during the three day period. 

With the hike in VAT, many businesses were looking forward to a fruitful Easter – giving their finances a healthy boost.

And this could still happen – especially as spending during public holidays always increases. Another day off work is another chance to spend money. Whether that’s indulging in shopping sprees or enjoying a day out with the family. Throw in good weather and restaurants and pubs will always benefits from people spending a leisurely afternoon socialising with friends. 

ITV however, should still enjoy a boost to their revenue due to extensive programming leading up to the wedding, with talk of adverts being redistributed in the schedule. Whether this will lead to longer ad breaks, we’ll just have to wait and see.

This article was written by Chris Hoey for Baines & Ernst - specialists in Debt Management Plans.