Chief executive's overview

As the world’s learning company, Pearson
has world-class capabilities and products
in educational courseware and assessment,
powered by learning technology.

By combining these capabilities with teaching and learning services, we help schools, universities and others to scale online, reach more people
and ensure better learning outcomes. As we do so, we provide Pearson with a larger market opportunity, a sharper focus on the fastest-growing education markets and stronger financial returns.

John Fallon Chief executive

Our strategy

Short-term priorities

• Deliver transformation
• Simplify our business 

• Stronger cash generation
• A growing company 

Strategic growth drivers

1 Digital & services
Build on our global strength in educational courseware and assessment with leading digital products and services, where we see the greatest potential for growth, scalability and impact on learner progress.

2 Market presence
Our strategy to build on our leading presence in developed markets, and the opportunity to meet growing global demand for education.

3 Measurable outcomes
Our efficacy programme is our long term commitment to delivering measurable impact. It informs all strategic decision making across Pearson, including our product and services strategy. We will begin reporting formally on this impact from 2018.

Pearson at a glance

Sales by Geography

Sales by Geography pie chart
NA 66% £2940m, Core 19% £836m, Growth 15% £692m




Adjusted operating profit by Geography

Adjusted operating profit by Geography
NA 72% £480m, Core 17% £114m, Growth -2% -£12, PRH 13% £90m, Discontinued £51m

Adjusted operating profit



Average annual growth in sales

2010 - 2015

Line chart - Average annual growth in sales 2010 - 2015

Average annual growth in adjusted operating profit

2010 - 2015

Line chart - Average annual growth in adjusted operating profit 2010 - 2015

Average annual growth in headline terms


Adjusted earnings per share


Operating cash flow




Chairman’s review

My focus will be on helping guide Pearson
back to growth, supporting the management
team and all of our employees in our mission:
to help more people make progress in their
lives through learning.

Sidney Taurel Chairman
Pearson share price performance


FTSE 100


FTSE All Share


Dear shareholders,
I am proud to introduce our annual report for the first time as Pearson’s chairman. This is an important time to be joining Pearson. Our 2015 performance was not what we would have wanted, and we now have a plan in place to return the company to growth, which you can read about in the full report.

The company has a strong purpose at its heart, but this is a challenging time for businesses in global education, with rapid changes taking place in the sector. These changes offer big opportunities for Pearson, but also present risks and transitions that we will need to manage in some of our traditionally strong businesses.

Sidney Taurel Chairman

Meeting the expectations of all of society

Pearson has an active role to play in finding
solutions to our global sustainability challenges,
which is integral to our business strategy and
how we report on our most material issues.

Sustainability review, and setting ambitions

We have completed a third-party review of policies and reporting, a benchmark against competitors and leaders, as well as internal interviews with Pearson executives. A new sustainability map captures our most material issues and defines three sustainability ambitions to guide our efforts into the future.

Pearson and the UN Sustainable Development Goals
Asian school girl writting on a chalk board

In 2015 we joined world leaders at the United Nations in committing to the UN sustainable development goals (SDGs) setting out their ambition for a more peaceful and prosperous world. These goals represent global challenges that impact education across the world. Goal 4 is particularly important for Pearson – “to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.” We are playing our part in contributing to this goal, through contributing educational expertise, knowledge and resources to help address these pressing challenges.

Pearson sustainability map

Our mission is to

help people make progress in their lives through access to better learning

We are aligned to the UN’s 17 sustainable development goals. Our framework directly address these three:

Book and pencil icon

Quality education

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Decent work and economic growth

Equal sign icon

SDG 10
Reduced inequalities

We have three sustainability ambitions:

Brief case and paper icon

Be a trusted partner

operate responsibly

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Reach more learners

be inclusive

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Create the future of education

be a leader in product innovation