Channel 4 has just published details of its financial plans:
Therefore, we have today outlined a number of immediate financial measures which, taken now, will enable us to successfully navigate through the crisis and protect Channel 4’s ongoing ability to serve its audience and invest in the UK creative industries.
All executive and non-executive Board members have taken an immediate voluntary 20% pay cut. At the request of the executive Board members the remuneration committee has decided to suspend the 2020 bonus scheme for executive directors.
We expect to reduce the 2020 content budget by £150m. This reflects both the difficulties of producing programmes and films in the current environment, as well as some extremely difficult decisions to delay or cancel some content across Channel 4, E4 and More 4 across the year. Channel 4 will maintain its support for the creative sector – continuing to commission and develop content for 2020 and 2021 – with ringfenced funding for small. Nations & regions and BAME-led independent producers (further details below).
A further £95m of savings will be achieved across the organisation through a full review of planned projects and investments, including a reduction in marketing budgets.
In order to provide additional liquidity and working capital through this unprecedented economic period we have drawn down on the commercial £75m revolving credit facility (RCF) that has been in place since 2018.
We remain focused on safeguarding the jobs and protecting the livelihoods of Channel 4 staff but have undertaken a comprehensive review of our people costs, which will include a full recruitment freeze for all but business critical roles and a review of all third-party costs.
Additionally, we will participate in the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and today we will be opening discussions on furloughing with around 10% of Channel 4 staff, whose roles are impacted by the current circumstances.