Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Channel One Needed State Support to Stay Afloat

State-controlled Channel One has published financial statements for the first time, showing that the station would not have been able to survive in 2009 and 2010 without state support, Kommersant reported Monday.

The report shows that in 2009 the channel generated 21.96 billion rubles ($730 million) in advertising — almost 22 percent of total TV advertising income — but spent 22.84 billion on production and received 2.42 billion rubles in government subsidies to make the company profitable.

In 2010, it received more state funding than the previous year. The state contributed 3.4 billion rubles, while the company earned 24.48 billion rubles and spent 25.82 billion rubles.

The report was published after long-standing complaints from both citizens and some government figures that Channel One was systematically hiding financial information, although it is obliged to publish it under Russian law.

The government owns a controlling 51 percent of the channel — 38.9 percent through the State Property Committee, 9.1 percent through Itar-Tass news agency and 3 percent through the Ostankino television center. The remaining 49 percent was owned by Roman Abramovich until 2010, when he sold 25 percent of the company for $150 million to the National Media Group, owned by Rossiya Bank — which is headed by Yury Kovalchuk, who is reported to be close to president-elect Vladimir Putin.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more