Rona Fairhead Financial Times Group CEO Quits as Sale Talk Intensifies
By Martin Baccardax | November 28, 2012 1:45 AM EST
Pearson Group, the publisher which owns the Financial Times, has lost its second senior executive in as many months after the announced departure of FT Group CEO Rona Fairhead.
The news follows last month's decision by Marjorie Scardino to step down after sixteen years as Pearson CEO and will likely reignite market speculation that it plans to sell its venerable flagship "Financial Times" newspaper. Fairhead will depart in April after twelve years with the group, the company said in a statement Tuesday.
"The leadership transition at Pearson makes this a natural moment for me to make a change," Fairhead said. "I will miss Pearson deeply but will cheer from the sidelines as its new leadership team develops and evolves Pearson's successful strategy and culture. I am very proud to have been part of it, but am ready to tackle a new set of challenges."
Scardino, who famously vowed the iconic pink paper would only be sold "over my dead body" will retire in January and be replaced by new CEO John Fallon, whom many analysts assume will continue to steer the company towards a deeper focus on educational publishing, which comprised around 75 percent of Pearson's first-half sales.
Earlier this month, Pearson CFO Robin Freestone told an investor conference in Barcelona that his company's ownership of the FT Group "could change" even though Fallon described it as a "highly valued and very valuable part of Pearson."
Pearson's FT Group holding, which includes a 50 percent stake in the Economist, could be worth as much as £750m. The jewel in the stable, however, is the 120-year old financial daily, which has a circulation of more than 600,000 and one of the best-known brands in media.
Earlier this week, the FT's sister paper in Berlin, the FT Deutschland, announced it will publish its last edition on 7 December after more than 12 years and €250m in losses. The FT Group had sold its 50 percent stake to publisher Gruner + Jahr in 2008.
Pearson shares were down 1.5 percent by late afternoon in London trading, changing hands at 1,166 pence each. The stock has fallen around 3.6 percent so far this year.
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Kate Middleton’s Mom Accused Of Being A Social Climber, Prince George Not Seen By Relatives
- Prince Harry & Camilla Thurlow Getting Serious, St. Tropez Holiday Before The Prince’s 30th Birthday [PHOTOS]
- Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt Heads to Malta For New Movie After A Whirlwind French Wedding [PHOTOS]
- Top 5 Richest Tennis Athletes
Join the Conversation
- Russia Invades Ukraine, Pro-Russian Rebels Create 'Second Front,' Obama Maintains No Military Action from US
- TEPCO Loses in Fukushima Suicide Case, Ordered to Pay $472,000 to Family
- Better Market Your Uranium Someplace Else, Japan Appetite No Longer Huge as Before – Former PM Tells Australia Queensland Premier Campbell Newman
- ISIS Wants $6.6M and Release of Aafia Siddiqui in Exchange of Head of Female US Humanitarian Aid Worker, 1st American Fighting for Jihadis Dead
- Product Recall Alert: Hewlett-Packard Pulls Out 6M Power Cords from US, Canada Over Fire Hazard Concerns, Australia Also Affected
- Sept 19 iPhone 6 Release Date Firms Up as iWatch Rollout Delayed to Jan 2015 – Reports
- Apple iWatch is iPhone 6 Accessory on Sept 19 Release Date: 6 Confirmed Specs & Features
- Canada Vs Russia War Erupts Via Twitter on Russia-Not Russia Maps
- Apple iOS 8 vs Android 5.0 L: OS Wars Puts Android to Lower while Apple to Higher
- James Foley Torture Involves CIA Waterboarding Technique
- North Korea Banker Who Manages Money of Kim Jong-un Defects to Russia With $5 Million
- Malaysia Airlines to Axe 4,000 Employees, Including CEO; Suspends Trading of Shares