German ad revenue continues to shrink

But an end to the downturn could be in sight

COLOGNE, Germany -- The advertising market in Europe's largest economy continues to shrink, but the latest figures suggest an end to the downturn could be in sight.

According to figures from Nielsen Media Research, advertising revenue across television, newspapers and magazines fell 2.4% in Q1-Q3 of 2009 to €14.3 billion ($21 billion). TV advertising was flat at €6.2 billion ($9 billion), a slim 0.2% drop.

Nielsen Media Research, which, like The Hollywood Reporter, is a subsidiary of the Nielsen Company, reported several positive trends, with prominent groups including Procter & Gamble, Danone and Henkel all boosting their ad budgets.

In-cinema advertising, however, was hit hard, with revenue falling 11.5% to €43 million ($64 million).

Nielsen's figures record gross revenues from ad bookings and, as such, do not reflect the major discounts most media outlets give their clients. Net TV ad revenue is believed to be down sharply from last year.