The BBC Trust is looking to bring greater clarity to the direction,
parameters and strategic priorities of BBC Worldwide's commercial
activities in the UK and overseas.
aim will be to ensure that they align properly with delivery
of the BBC's public purposes.
Trust is also looking to make changes to BBC Worldwide's detailed
control framework to establish a more contained focus for
it notes that none of this cuts across the ambition that BBC
Worldwide should maintain and develop its commercial vigour
and strength. In the Trust's view, this is perfectly compatible
with a challenging remit and clearer parameters for its operation
and strategic focus.
July the BBC Trust had launched a review of BBC Worldwide's
mandate, strategy and governance arrangements. The aim was
twofold: to see if any changes were needed to reflect experience
since the present arrangements were established in the current
BBC Charter; and to consider concerns expressed by others
in the market about the impact of BBC Worldwide.
then, however, the public policy debate about BBC Worldwide
has broadened to take in the new question of whether it has
a role to play in sustaining a second public service broadcasting
entity. In the Trust's view it would be wrong for the Trust
to take decisions based on its current review until this new
question about BBC Worldwide has been resolved.
part of the review of BBC Worldwide, the Trust has considered
the rationale for the first look arrangements under which
BBC Worldwide has an opportunity to acquire most BBC rights
before they are offered to competitors. The Trust remains
satisfied that the rationale in favour of the first look arrangement
within existing structures remains strong.
particular it enables proper control of the BBC's brand and
reputation to be maintained as its content is exploited commercially.
The Trust is also mindful of the economies of scale it creates
and has noted that many other content producers use similar
'vertically integrated' approaches.
Trust and the BBC Executive have also been considering whether
any adjustments to the current governance arrangements for
the BBC's commercial activities might be necessary to ensure
that the mechanics underpinning the controls are both streamlined
and effective. This work is closely linked to the current
public policy debate about BBC Worldwide and is ongoing.
The Trust will now work with the BBC Executive to assess more
fully the potential benefits for audiences emerging from partnership
options that the BBC and Channel 4 are currently developing.
Trust adds that it will remain fully engaged in the public
debate. It will return to the question of BBC Worldwide's
strategy as soon as there is sufficient clarity around the
nature of the partnership options for the Trust to reach fully
Trust starts public consultation on proposal for IPTV