FT publisher Pearson lifts annual profits guidance

19th January 2011, Comments 0 comments

British media group Pearson, owner of the Financial Times newspaper, upgraded its annual earnings forecast on Wednesday and cited "vigorous" growth despite tough trading conditions.

The company forecast full-year adjusted earnings of approximately 76 pence per share, up from previous guidance of 72 pence.

"All of Pearson's major businesses sustained their strong trading momentum throughout 2010," the group said in a trading update ahead of its annual results that are due at the end of February.

"We will report healthy sales growth and further margin improvement, fuelled by our consistent investment in the global learning industry, in digital services and in developing economies."

Pearson added that it expects to post full-year operating profit of about £850 million (1.0 billion euros, $1.4 billion) for 2010. That was about 20 percent higher than £710 million in the previous year.

"For the third successive year, our growth is vigorous even though market conditions have been anaemic," Chief Executive Marjorie Scardino said in the statement.

"That confirms the soundness of our strategy and the increasing strength of our market positions. We are on the right road and set out on 2011 with confidence that we will have another good year."

Investors welcomed the earnings update in afternoon deals, sending Pearson shares 5.86 percent higher to 1,065 pence on London's FTSE 100 index, which was slightly lower.

© 2011 AFP

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