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Financial Times Sold to Japan’s Nikkei for $1.3 Billion

U.K. publisher Pearson has sold the Financial Times Group to Japan’s Nikkei Inc. for £844 million (approximately $1.3 billion) in cash.

Pearson said on Thursday that it will now be completely focused on its educational publishing business.

“We’ve reached an inflection point in media, driven by the explosive growth of mobile and social,” said Pearson’s chief executive John Fallon. “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.”

It was reported earlier today that the British publisher, which has owned the Financial Times for almost 60 years, was in advanced negotiations to sell the Financial Times to an unnamed global, digital news company.

Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters and Germany’s Axel Springer were among the buyers thought to be interested.

“Our motto of providing high-quality reporting on economic and other news, while maintaining fairness and impartiality, is very close to that of the FT,” said Tsuneo Kita, chairman and Group CEO of Nikkei. “We share the same journalistic values.”

The circulation of the Financial Times, which was first published in 1888, was almost 720,000 across print and online last year.

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