Doctor Who helped BBC Worldwide rake in a record Â£200 million in revenue last year.
The show, along mega brands like blokey car-fest Top Gear, BBC Earth, the umbrella brand for the channels natural history output and guide book impresarios Lonely Planet, made a profit of Â£40 million for the BBCâ€™s commercial arm.
Â£147.3 million came from the exploitation of programme sales, live events, DVDâ€™s and Magazines, representing a 15% year-on-year increase in revenues, while profits from these brands rose 33.8m year on year to Â£51.5m.
Factoring in the 19% increase in revenue for Lonely Planet and the figures push beyond the Â£200 million mark.
John Smith, the chief executive of Worldwide, said:
“As well as developing into a diversified global media business and extending the international visibility of the BBC brand, the company is delivering a strong financial performance.”
Doctor Who was ranked fifth among programme brands sold internationally by BBC Worldwide in the year to the end of March.
The Eleventh Hour or the â€˜launch episodeâ€™ in brand speak attracted an audience of 1.5 million on BBC America, the number one position on iTunes Australian TV episode chart and was the highest non-sports programme in Canada on the cable channel Space.
All three are key areas for the BBC Worldwide who took the opportunity of the Doctor’s regeneration to generate new viewers for the show.
The one nation that stubbornly refused to follow the growth trend was America. Profits fell by 38.5 percent last year.
However Worldwide has announced a plan to launch more channels across the pond, possible in the style ofÂ content specific channels like chuckle focused BBC Three and the sober, documentary based BBC Four.
Also, John Smith says BBC Worldwide plans to grow their digital offerings overseas.
Whether that means more programmes available for download on iTunes, more shows being available on the upcoming Hulu Plus premium streaming service, or the much-requested-by-fans offering of a US-available BBC iPlayer, remains to be seen.
(via The Guardian)