Pearson share price: Company sees flat underlying sales in first nine months

on Oct 24, 2014
Updated: Oct 21, 2019
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iNVEZZ.com, Friday, October 24: Pearson Plc (LON:PSON), reported flat underlying revenue and reiterated its full-year earnings guidance in an interim management statement for the first nine months of the year.

The owner of the Financial Times said today that 2014 adjusted earnings per share would be within the 62p-67p range it set earlier this year. The range puts Pearson’s 2014 earnings below last year’s 70.1 pence a share.
In a separate statement to the London Stock Exchange, the company announced that its chief financial officer, Robin Freestone, would step down by the end of next year to “explore a range of other interests”.

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Pearson’s chief executive officer John Fallon commented: “Robin has given us plenty of notice of his intentions, and he will continue to be fully engaged in leading the company as we ensure a smooth transition to his successor.” Fallon added that Freestone had been instrumental “in helping to reshape Pearson as a more global, digital and service-oriented business”.

The company said that it had commenced a process to find a successor to Freestone, adding that it was considering both internal and external candidates.
In today’s trading, Pearson share were down 2.4 percent at 1,141.00p as of 09:38 BST. The company’s share price has fallen 14.6 percent since the start of the year.
**Nine months**
Pearson saw a two-percent revenue growth in its main market, North America, which accounts for 60 percent of its sales. However, this was offset by weakness in its core European markets, where revenue fell six percent on an underlying basis. The company’s performance in the region was impacted by policy change in the UK and declines in Western Europe.

CEO Fallon commented: “We are reiterating our guidance for this year and, overall, we are performing well competitively through a period of change and in difficult markets. We still expect those markets to start to stabilise next year and then return to growth in future years.”

Pearson said that its restructuring programme remained on track, with expected net restructuring costs of £50 million this year.
**Analysts on Microsoft**
According to the Financial Times, the 22 analysts offering 12 month price targets for Pearson have a median target of 1,197p, with a high estimate of 1,540p and a low estimate of 660.00p. As of October 17, 2014, the consensus forecast amongst 45 polled investment analysts covering Pearson suggests that investors should hold their position in the company. The same consensus estimate has been maintained since the sentiment of investment analysts deteriorated on June 03, 2008, the FT notes
**As of 11:27 BST buy Pearson shares at 1,137.00 pence**
**As of 11:27 BST sell Pearson shares at 1,136.00 pence**

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