Pearson Makes Strong Start to the Year
12 May 2000
2000 AGM Presentation
At today's annual general meeting, Lord Stevenson, chairman of Pearson plc, reported that the company has made a strong start to the year and is continuing to step up investment in developing its new internet enterprises. Lord Stevenson said: "We are very pleased with current trading across the company. Although much of our profits are made in the second half of the year, we can report that, at this stage, our business operations are in good shape to deliver further growth in revenues and margins. We are also continuing to invest in developing the internet enterprises that will secure the company's longer term growth." In an update on business operations, Marjorie Scardino, Pearson's chief executive, reported that:
- Pearson has now acquired Dorling Kindersley Holdings plc and is moving ahead swiftly with its integration within The Penguin Group and the expansion of its properties across Pearson's education and television businesses.
- The proposed merger of Pearson Television with CLT-UFA to create Europe's largest television and radio broadcast and content company is on track for completion later in the year.
- The Financial Times group's network of international business newspapers is continuing to generate strong circulation and advertising growth.
- Pearson Education has made a good start to the year, with its US school operations benefiting from the successful launch of a new elementary reading programme and its US college and international operations also performing strongly.
- Pearson is continuing to step up its investment in developing internet enterprises, focusing on its network of international business, investor and personal finance websites and its planned online consumer education network. These internet enterprises are all making good progress:
The FT group's online business portals are continuing to generate strong traffic growth and are on track to treble revenues this year from £7m in 1999. FT.com services will be launched via mobile phone next month. FT MarketWatch, the joint venture with MarketWatch.com, operator of America's leading investor website, and mesfinances.fr, a new French language personal finance site modelled on FTYourMoney.com, will both launch early next month. The first channels within the planned online consumer education network are on track to launch this autumn as Pearson continues to develop the education alliance partnerships announced in March.
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