Most big-deal acquisitions, however unexpected, make sense once they are in place. And the sale of the Financial Times, though quickly consummated since first reports Sunday, was not all that surprising.
Here are my quick thoughts on why Japanese Nikkei won the trophy newspaper and what may happen next:
- No longer a fit: As Pearson has become an education company with smaller news holdings, it needs to concentrate on its primary business. The FT group has some specialized financial products but nothing on the scale of Bloomberg, Dow Jones, Thomson Reuters — or Nikkei for that matter. There are few synergies with the education unit.In retrospect, the sale may have been telegraphed two years ago when CEO John Fallon, who had been running the education unit’s international business, succeeded American-born Marjorie Scardino, whose roots were in publishing, particularly The Economist (in which Pearson retains a 50 percent interest for now).