OLD Media Moves

FT being shopped in China

January 7, 2013

Posted by Chris Roush

Doug Young of The South China Morning Post writes that the parent company of The Financial Times is looking for a buyer in China.

Young writes, “But what I find most intriguing is the fact that Pearson might even consider selling one of its crown jewels to a Chinese buyer, which perhaps reflects just how difficult the market has become for print publications that once ruled the global media market. Pearson’s advisers looking in China also highlights the fact that Chinese media are one of the few global groups in the sector that is relatively cash rich, since many of the nation’s biggest media groups have near-monopoly status in their local markets and often have highly diverse holdings that run the range from print, to broadcasting and new media assets.

“The Financial Times saga first burst into global headlines last fall, when media reported that Pearson was looking to sell the paper and the most likely buyers would include financial media groups Thomson Reuters and Bloomberg, as well as Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, owner of the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires. Later reports about a month ago indicated that Bloomberg was indeed interested, but it’s unclear if those talks ever went anywhere.

“My guess is that this sniffing around for interest from China indicates that any Bloomberg talks have either stalled, or perhaps Pearson’s advisers are trying to start up a bidding war. According to my source, his company, one of China’s top media groups, was recently approached by third-party consultants acting on Pearson’s behalf to see if they had any interest in a potential bid for the Financial Times.”

Read more here.

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