For the second time in the space of a month, Pearson is selling its stake in another newspaper company. At the end of last month, Pearson sold the Financial Times Group to Japanese media company Nikkei for £844 million (See here). Less than a month later they are parting with their 50% share in The Economist, passing it on to European investment company Exor. The Economist is a global business and news publication and comprises of Economist.com, the Economist Intelligence Unit, The Economist Corporate Network, The Economist Events, The World in… and Intelligent Life. The sale was valued at £494 million and is expected to complete in the fourth quarter of 2015.
The vendors, Pearson were guided by a team from Freshfields, led by partners Ollie Lazenby and Simon Marchant who each played the same role when advising on the previous Pearson sale. Exor sought advice from Italian firm Pedersoli e Associati as well as Macfarlanes. Carlo Re provided legal counsel from Pedersoli while John Dodsworth from Macfarlane’s UK office assisted in counsel. The Economist were advised by Linklaters and corporate partners Richard Godden and James Inglis alongside corporate managing associate Nicholas Edwards.