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Pearson sells stake in 'Business Standard'

Financial Times owner Pearson has sold its 13.85 per cent stake in India's daily business newspaper Business Standard, according to the Guardian. Pearson has decided to give up its shares in the newspaper four years after it became the first foreign company to make a major investment in an Indian business title.

The two papers had collaborated for more than a decade before Pearson bought the stake in 2004, with FT articles regularly featured in the Business Standard. The Indian title will continue to use FT content until the end of the year.

Guardian's details:

A statement printed on the front page of today's Business Standard said: "Infina Finance Private Ltd, an associate of the Kotak Mahindra group, has acquired the 13.85% stake in Business Standard Ltd from Pearson, the owner of the Financial Times.

"Business Standard and the FT have also realigned the licence agreement between the parties whereby Business Standard will continue to have access to FT content till the end of the year. BSL and the FT have had a fruitful association for 15 years, and each wishes the other well in its future plans."

Pearson will continue to publish the FT's Asian edition in India, while the company also operates its Penguin book publishing and Pearson Education businesses in the country.

Other UK publishing groups to have invested in India include Independent News & Media, which owns a stake in the Jagran Prakashan group; and the Daily Mail & General Trust, which has launched a new paper in collaboration with the India Today group.

Pearson's decision to sell its stake in Business Standard follows its exit from various ventures in continental Europe as it concentrates on developing the FT as a global brand. Earlier this year, the company sold its 50% stake in Financial Times Deutschland, after the previous disposals of Spain's Recoletos and French title Les Echos. However, Pearson retains a stake in Russian business newspaper Vedomosti and a 50% interest in South African group BDFM, the publishers of financial titles Business Day and Financial Mail.

Date posted: April 19, 2008 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 395