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Zinc Media plots M&A as revenue and profits jump

By Marian McHugh

“Super-indie behind Putin vs the West sees revenue rising to £40m. Zinc Media Group is planning further acquisitions having reported a record year for revenue and profits.  The AIM-listed super-indie’s full-year results bucked the trend in what was a challenging year for UK and international TV production, with 2023 revenue jumping 34% year-on-year to £40.2m.  

This is attributed to 19% organic growth in television, as well as full-year inclusion of The Edge Picture Company, which Zinc acquired in 2022 and which generated £13m of revenue in 2023.  

Zinc’s EBITDA profit also hit a 13-year high of £1m, a massive jump on last year’s £100,000 figure. Zinc’s TV business houses factual labels Red Sauce, Brook Lapping, Supercollider, Rex, Tern TV and Atomic. It highlighted Brook Lapping’s Putin vs The West and Deborah James: Bowelbabe in Her Own Words (both for BBC2) and Gender Wars (Channel 4) as headline-grabbing programmes, as well as the record 136-hour order from Channel 5 for Red Sauce format Bargain Loving Brits.  

The Putin vs the West producer also reported a record level of international business with 23% of revenues coming from outside of the UK, compared to last year’s figure of 18%. Upcoming shows for global broadcasters include Atomic’s Defending Europe (Nat Geo/Disney+) and Rex’s Top Gun: The Next Generation (w/t) (Nat Geo/Disney+). 

Due to its publicly-listed status, Zinc cannot contribute its financials to the Broadcast Indie Survey, but its revenues for 2023 would place it above Argonon in this year’s list of top owners/consolidators. The super-indie plans to further growth through M&A and will “seek out” suitable acquisition opportunities to accelerate growth, as well as furthering its investment in new markets.  

Mark Browning, chief exec of Zinc Media, said: “This has been a year of record achievement for the group and comes off the back of significant investment in our people and our businesses along with our acquisition of The Edge 18 months ago. We have big ambitions to scale this group through organic expansion and strategic acquisition.” 

Zinc has a positive outlook for 2024, with a pipeline of £32m in revenue booked and at a highly advanced stage as of this month. It has “heightened confidence” that it is in a strong position to navigate the “recovering” UK TV market.”