Russia's media market may be worth $15bln by 2014 - official

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MOSCOW, March 1 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's media market may be worth $15 billion by 2014, the head of the country's media agency said Wednesday.

"Growth rates for domestic media market are many times greater than both global indicators and national GDP growth," Mikhail Seslavinsky said at a conference. "By 2014, we could be looking at volume of $15 billion, against today's total of $5 billion."

Seslavinsky said that growth was due to the country's growing economy.

"In conditions of growing competition, media companies' strategy is changing," he said. "They are starting to develop more as diversified holding companies that essentially include all known media types."

Seslavinsky cited analysts as predicting the formation of several media giants in Russia.

"I would like to single out IPOs, which also contribute to increased market capitalization of companies, and therefore the country's capitalization and its growing influence," he said.

Seslavinsky said some 67,000 mass media outlets, including 53,000 print and 14,000 electronic, were registered in Russia as of January 1, 2006.

The media market is one of Russia's most dynamic, and may hit $8 billion by 2008, First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said at the conference.

Medvedev said the advertising market had doubled in the last three years, reaching $5 billion late last year.

Seslavinsky said the advertising market in media in 2005 had grown by 28%, with television ads remaining the biggest segment.

"The volume of the television ads market totaled $2,330 million, or 37% more than in 2004," he said.

He said the Internet advertising market had grown by 71% against 2004 to reach $60 million, while the print media market had shrunk by 12% against 2004, to $1.4 billion. Radio ads volumes had grown by 20%, to $300 million.

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