August 9, 2022
Bloomberg Media CEO, M. Scott Havens, sent the following memo to Bloomberg Media employees:
A look at the recent earnings reports rolling in from media platforms and publishers place Bloomberg Media’s 24% year over year (YoY) total revenue growth in the first half of 2022 in rare company.
The industry-wide reporting signals a clear softening in advertising revenue, likely driven by a slowing economy and recession fears, but Bloomberg Media is bucking this trend. In the first half of 2022, our advertising business grew an incredible 29%, with Q2 growing 27% YoY. This is our eighth consecutive quarter of ad growth and the fifth straight increase of more than 20%. Very few, if any, media companies can say that. Our sales & marketing teams have transformed a business that lagged the industry three years ago into one that leads it. Collaborating with the editorial, digital, and finance groups, they’ve delivered smart, strategic programs to our clients to reach Bloomberg’s unique cross-platform audience of 100 million+ global leaders — one of the most valuable in all media.
Here’s the rest of our top-line revenue picture across the various business lines and a deeper dive into our plans for building upon them:
- Total Revenue: +24% YoY
- Total advertising: +29%
- Digital: +29%
- Digital Video: + 51%
- Ad sales by-region
- APAC: +30%
- Europe: +60%
- MEA: +26%
- Americas: +23%
- Consumer subscriptions: +27%
- Bloomberg LIVE Events: +53%
- Licensing & Partnerships: -4%
- Total advertising: +29%
Our growth is well-diversified across regions, platforms, and lines of revenue. Bloomberg Media has never been in a more stable position to withstand any forthcoming industry headwinds.
You’ll note that we’re now reporting “digital video” results, aligned to how we sell “video everywhere” on our two multi-platform networks, Bloomberg TV and Bloomberg Quicktake across Bloomberg.com, streaming and social platforms. Revenue grew substantially over 2021’s first half in video, where people are spending most of their time and marketers increasingly want to reach them. A revamped team is bringing impressive new thinking to original programming on Quicktake, and Bloomberg TV is a breakout news hit on streaming services.
Licensing and partnerships revenue was down slightly in the first half, largely due to our timeline for recognizing revenue, but we expect that business to grow this year on the strength of existing and new established partnerships, such as the recent Bloomberg Adria launch. New Chief Partnerships Officer, Nick Sallon, previously at Twitter, joined us on August 1 to lead an integrated organization encompassing the areas helmed by our new GM of Video and Audio Travis Winkler and Soo Kang, who heads licensing, branded partnerships and enterprise subscriptions sales.
In a natural evolution of our consumer subscription business, we successfully launched enterprise sales three months ago, adding almost 40,000 seats at influential businesses and universities; and catapulting us past 400,000 subscribers. While revenue continued to grow in Q2 in the face of industry-wide declines in news site traffic, this lays the groundwork for the subs business’ next phase. Our teams are also hard at work creating products that enhance user experience and deepen engagement, leveraging data and infrastructure to ensure we deeply understand our audience and transforming our marketing efforts across the journey to interact with and retain customers. We’ve added more than a million newsletter subscriptions over the last year as a part of this effort.
We’re also launching new editorial products to engage and grow with people. Bloomberg UK’s May launch was led by a cross-functional New York and London-based leadership team, adding resources and new talent to an established, award-winning London newsroom. We quickly positioned ourselves as a daily must-read in our second-largest market. One example: Allegra Stratton’s The Readout newsletter is becoming a daily must-have for almost 50,000 subscribers and growing rapidly. UK traffic, engagement and revenue have never been higher. And we’ll continue looking at tailored international growth opportunities in other markets.
We’re also continuing to invest in the growth of brands like Bloomberg Green, with expanded climate-related coverage including a new podcast and Greener Living section.
In November, Bloomberg New Economy, which held its first “Gateway” series convening in Panama in Q2, will hold its fifth annual flagship New Economy Forum in Singapore. Jessica Webber, new to our team from The New York Times, will lead the amazing BNE group and the Bloomberg Live team which is over-delivering, as noted above. Jess and team will build on that and push us into additional consumer-oriented events in the coming year.
Our successful first half performance empowers us to make big, smart decisions for the long term, rather than short-term, short-sighted revenue lifts to the detriment of user experience. I’ll share more exciting specifics on this at the September 20th Town Hall.
Of course, NONE of this would be possible without the first-class talent and supportive culture we’ve all worked hard to create. We remain committed to making this an incredible place to work and succeed.
There’s much to be proud of now, and I know the rest of the year will bring more of the same. Thank you for everything you do to drive our continued success here at Bloomberg Media.
Stay generous. Stay ambitious.