STV has announced record profits after an “exceptional year of growth” that seen operating gains rise by 39% from 2020.
The company also recorded its highest revenue and lowest net debt ever in the figures for 2021 that were released on Wednesday.
The company’s revenue is up 35% from the previous year and 17% from pre-pandemic levels in 2019.
The profits came as STV Studios revenue trebled to almost £27m and the channel recorded its best viewing share since 2008.
Strong interest throughout the country in Euro 2020, with it being the first major tournament Scotland was part of since 1998, and popular new dramas helped viewing figures and revenue streams grow.
CEO Simon Pitts welcomed the news. He said: “2021 was an exceptional year of growth for STV which saw us deliver the highest revenue, operating profit and lowest net debt on record.
“We continue to support our people, partners and communities as we emerge from the pandemic with momentum and confidence.
“We are taking full advantage of the growth in video viewing, with STV recording its highest viewing share since 2008 and our streaming service STV Player growing streams by 63%, thanks to huge audiences for new dramas and Euro 2020.
“This viewing success propelled us to our highest ever advertising revenues, +24% on 2020 and 11% ahead of 2019, with growth continuing into 2022.
“Our strategy of creating a more diversified media business through a relentless focus on digital streaming and production growth is delivering, with these new areas now making up 36% of our total profit.
“We added 1000 hours of drama boxsets to STV Player and grew active users by 54%, with over a fifth of VOD streams now coming from outside Scotland.
“STV Studios enjoyed its best-ever creative and financial performance in 2021, winning 16 new programme commissions across the genres, with plenty more to come as we aim to become the UK’s leading nations and regions producer.”