Employees and the Economic Situation of Broadcasting in Germany

Employees and the Economic Situation of Broadcasting in Germany

The journalistic and economic aspects of broadcasting are of great importance for media politics and broadcasting regulation. With this in mind, the conference of the directors of the State Media Authorities (DLM) regularly orders a study on the employment and economic situation of broadcasting in Germany, which is conducted by the Hans Bredow Institute, in cooperation with the research group Communication Research Munich.

The report, which was released in autumn 2005, covers 13 public service broadcasters, 123 private television broadcasters and 217 private radio broadcasters, representing 46,000 employers and a gross added value of 3.9 billion Euros in 2004. On top of this, the broadcasting companies purchased service guarantees amounting to 10.9 billion Euros.

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Project Description

After the collapse of the advertising market in private television, with its 12,700 salaried employees, profits were seen to increase - with a significant deferral of sources of revenue. While profits from television advertisements, amounting to 3.2 billion Euros, reached the lowest level since 1996, there were profits of 900 million in teleshopping and 1.0 billion from Pay-TV; a further 260 million came from call media, i.e. premium services, such as quiz games. The recent increase in employment rates in private television is almost solely based on teleshopping providers. The cost recovery levels of private television broadcasters in national television amount to an average of 110% and 105% for teleshopping providers. In contrast to that, deficits emerged in Pay-TV (cost recovery 95%) and in regional and local television (87%).

In private radio (3,900 employees) advertising revenues increased for the first time since 2004; national radio reached an average cost recovery level of 117%, local radio 109%.

Public service broadcasters, who are subject to social insurance contributions with 29,400 employees, generate most of the cost recovery themselves by, for example, self-production for television. Aside from fee revenues of 6.7 billion Euros, only 250 million Euros per household came from radio and television broadcasting. Broadcasting corporations have shown a slow but constant staff reduction. Since 1996, the number of employees who are subject to social insurance contributions has decreased by three percent.

Project Information


Duration: 1997-2006

Research programme:
Further Projects

Cooperation Partner

F. Böckelmann (AKM)

Contact person

Dipl.-Soz. Hermann-Dieter Schröder
Senior Researcher Media Management & Media Organisation

Dipl.-Soz. Hermann-Dieter Schröder

Leibniz-Institut für Medienforschung │ Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI)
Rothenbaumchaussee 36
20148 Hamburg

Tel. +49 (0)40 45 02 17 - 32
Fax +49 (0)40 45 02 17 - 77




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