South-Western - Management  
Pearson CEO Scardino Feels Secure in Job
Topic Strategy
Key Words strategy
InfoTrac Reference none
News Story

In a comparison to the recently dismissed heads of Vivendi Universal SA and Bertelsmann AG, Marjorie Scardino feels her job is secure. Pearson isn't burdened with huge debt like Vivendi, or involved in "edgy Internet businesses," like Bertelsmann. Although she does admit making some mistakes, Scardino believes that investing in core publishing businesses will pay off in the long run.

Pearson has about half the state-testing market in the U.S., which is expected to double by 2005 because of a new federal law. It also has a strong presence in elementary and secondary school markets, and college textbook sales are expected to grow by 10% this year.

Scardino feels her greatest success has been changing the corporate culture to focus more on profitable performance and give it an overall direction.

Questions
1.

Research Pearson PLC by going to its website and answer the following questions: What are the core firms at Pearson? What are the secondary firms? Which firms are most directly affected by the strategies discussed in this article? Explain.

2.

What kinds of strategies are discussed here: corporate-level, industry-level, or firm-level? Explain.

Source Steve Stecklow, "Pearson CEO Scardino Feels Secure in Job," Wall Street Journal, Aug. 5, 2002.
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