The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is the national broadcaster of the United Kingdom. Headquartered at Broadcasting House in London, it is the world's oldest national broadcaster, and the largest broadcaster in the world by number of employees, employing over 22,000 staff in total, of whom approximately 19,000 are in public-sector broadcasting.[1][3][4][5][6]

British Broadcasting Corporation
TypeStatutory corporation with a royal charter
IndustryMass media
PredecessorBritish Broadcasting Company
Founded18 October 1922; 99 years ago (1922-10-18) (as British Broadcasting Company)
1 January 1927; 95 years ago (1927-01-01) (as British Broadcasting Corporation)
FounderHM Government
HeadquartersBroadcasting House, London, United Kingdom
Area served
Key people
Revenue £5.064 billion (2021)[1]
£290 million (2021)[1]
£227 million (2021)[1]
Total assets £2.11 billion (2021)[1]
OwnerPublic owned[2]
Number of employees
22,219 (2021)[1]
DivisionsBBC Television
BBC Studios
BBC Sport
BBC Radio
BBC News
BBC Online
BBC Sounds
BBC Weather
BBC Music
BBC English Regions
BBC Scotland
BBC Cymru Wales
BBC Northern Ireland
BBC North

The BBC is established under a royal charter[7] and operates under its agreement with the secretary of state for digital, culture, media and sport.[8] Its work is funded principally by an annual television licence fee[9] which is charged to all British households, companies, and organisations using any type of equipment to receive or record live television broadcasts and iPlayer catch-up.[10] The fee is set by the British Government, agreed by Parliament,[11] and is used to fund the BBC's radio, TV, and online services covering the nations and regions of the UK. Since 1 April 2014, it has also funded the BBC World Service (launched in 1932 as the BBC Empire Service), which broadcasts in 28 languages and provides comprehensive TV, radio, and online services in Arabic and Persian.

Around a quarter of the BBC's revenue comes from its commercial subsidiary BBC Studios (formerly BBC Worldwide), which sells BBC programmes and services internationally and also distributes the BBC's international 24-hour English-language news services BBC World News, and from, provided by BBC Global News Ltd. In 2009, the company was awarded the Queen's Award for Enterprise in recognition of its international achievements.[12]

From its inception, through the Second World War (where its broadcasts helped to unite the nation), to the popularisation of television in the post-WW2 era and the internet in the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the BBC has played a prominent role in British life and culture.[13] It was widely known colloquially as the Beeb, Auntie, or a combination of both (Auntie Beeb).[14][15]

Share this article:

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article BBC, and is written by contributors. Text is available under a CC BY-SA 4.0 International License; additional terms may apply. Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.