Statement: The BBC’s commercial and trading activities – requirements and guidance

  • Start: 30 July 2018
  • Status: Statement published
  • End: 24 September 2018

Statement published 11 February 2019

The BBC Charter and Agreement require Ofcom to consider the impact of the BBC’s activities on fair and effective competition. The BBC may only carry out commercial activities through subsidiary companies. The BBC’s commercial subsidiaries generate returns which can be reinvested in BBC programmes and services and supplement income from the licence fee.

One of Ofcom’s principal functions in regulating the BBC is to set requirements around the interaction between the BBC Public Service and its commercial activities.

In 2017 we published requirements aimed at addressing competition concerns that could arise from the relationship between the BBC Public Service and its commercial subsidiaries to ensure that commercial activities do not, as a result of their relationship with the BBC Public Service, trading activities or non-service activities, distort the market or create an unfair competitive advantage.

Following further work in this area, including looking at the processes and practices around the operation of the commercial subsidiaries and their relationships with the BBC’s Public Service, we have published updated requirements and guidance, and our statement setting out our decisions to modify the requirements following consultation.

Main documents

Supporting documents

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Responder name Type
BBC (PDF File, 662.8 KB) Organisation
ITV (PDF File, 329.6 KB) Organisation
Pact (PDF File, 299.3 KB) Organisation
Sky (PDF File, 243.2 KB) Organisation