Pearson buys stake in Nook Media

Pearson has bought a 5% stake in NOOK Media, the e-reading company spun out of Barnes & Noble earlier this year. Pearson is investing $89.5m in cash in the business valuing it at $1.8bn, and sees the deal as a way of leveraging its education content on the NOOK platforms. NOOK Media, which is part-owned by B&N and Microsoft, also comprises 674 college bookstores across America.

Will Ethridge, chief executive officer of Pearson North America, said: "With this investment we have entered into a commercial agreement with NOOK Media that will allow our two companies to work closely together in order to create a more seamless and effective experience for students. It is another example of our strategy of making our content and services broadly available to students and faculty through a wide range of distribution partners."

Following the deal, Barnes & Noble will now own approximately 78.2% of the NOOK Media subsidiary and Microsoft will own about 16.8%. William Lynch, chief executive officer of Barnes & Noble, said: “Pearson is a forward thinking company similarly focused on reading and learning, with powerful assets and a terrific management team.”

Subject to certain conditions, Pearson will earn the option to purchase up to an additional five percent ownership in NOOK Media.

Microsoft made a $300m investment in NOOK Media in April last year for a 17.6% equity stake valuing it then at $1.7bn. NOOK Media was formally divested of the wider B&N business in October.