In the UK, Pearson has confirmed that it is discussing ‘a possible combination of Penguin and Random House’ with Bertelsmann.
Pearson said in a statement that the two publishers ‘have not reached agreement and there is no certainty that the discussions will lead to a transaction’. ‘A further announcement will be made if and when appropriate,’ said Pearson.
The confirmation follows the news in early October that Pearson chief executive Marjorie Scardino will step down from her role in 2013, and will be replaced by chief executive of Pearson’s International Education division John Fallon. The Bookseller reports that Fallon’s appointment has prompted speculation that Pearson may seek to sell Penguin or the Financial Times.
Pearson Australia and Random House Australia both declined to comment on the talks when contacted by Bookseller+Publisher.