Japanese Newspaper Buys the Financial Times

FT is sold for $1.3 billion.

Well that was fast. Just about an hour ago Pearson said it was in advanced talks to sell the Financial Times, and now we have word that a deal is done. Japanese newspaper company Nikkei Inc. is the buyer.

Nikkei Inc. publishes The Nikkei, the largest business-focused newspaper in Japan. The company will buy the FT, its site and Pearson’s stake in The Economist for roughly $1.3 billion.

In an announcement, Pearson CEO John Fallon said what many have been guessing — that Pearson wanted to sell the FT so it could focus on its more lucrative education properties.

“Pearson has been a proud proprietor of the FT for nearly 60 years,” said Fallon. “But we’ve reached an inflection point in media, driven by the explosive growth of mobile and social. In this new environment, the best way to ensure the FT’s journalistic and commercial success is for it to be part of a global, digital news company. Pearson will now be 100 percent focused on our global education strategy.”