Pearson’s pre-tax profit climbs to £354 million in 2020

Written by: Wajeeh Khan
March 8, 2021
  • Pearson plc reports £354 million of profit before tax in 2020.
  • The British company values its full-year revenue at £3.40 billion.
  • Pearson's board declares 13.5 pence a share of final dividend.

Pearson plc (LON: PSON) said on Monday that its pre-tax profit saw an increase in 2020 on the back of lower costs. But adjusted profit and revenue, it added, remained under pressure last year. The British multinational also said that it wishes to serve consumers directly. To that end, Pearson expressed plans of restructuring the company on Monday.

As part of the plan, Pearson wants to tap into the demand for accreditation and certification, focus on the workforce-skills gap, and look for opportunities in digital learning tools. The London-based company said that it intends to simplify its property portfolio as well.

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In separate news on Monday, Japan’s Panasonic said it will buy Blue Yonder (a U.S. software firm) for £4.70 billion.

Pearson plc reports £3.40 billion of revenue in 2020

Pearson reported £354 million of pre-tax profit in 2020. In the previous year, its pre-tax profit stood at a lower £232 million. On an adjusted basis, however, its operating profit slid to £313 million last year compared to £581 million in 2019, but was in line with the consensus estimates.

Revenue in 2020, as per the publishing firm, came in at £3.40 billion versus the year-ago figure of £3.87 billion. For 2021, Pearson forecasts its adjusted operating profit to remain in line with the market expectations. Revenue this year, it added, was likely to return to growth.

In its earlier report for the third quarter, Pearson had posted a 32% annualised growth in its global online learning sales amidst the Coronavirus pandemic that restricted people to their homes.

Pearson declares 13.5 pence a share of final dividend

The education company’s board declared 13.5 pence per share of final dividend on Monday that remained unchanged from 2019.

Pearson shares slid just under 2% in premarket trading on Monday but recovered the entire intraday loss on market. Including the price action, the stock is now trading at a per-share price of £7.81 after recovering from a low of £4.23 per share in May 2020, when the COVID-19 restrictions were at their peak. The price action should come in handy if you are interested in investing in the stock market.

Pearson plc had started the year 2021 at £6.82 per share in the stock market. At the time of writing, the British multinational publishing and education company has a market cap of £5.84 billion and a price to earnings ratio of 22.70.