Pearson splashes out to secure former Disney exec Bird as CEO

LONDON (Reuters) – Education publisher Pearson PSON.L has tapped Andy Bird as its next chief executive, turning to a media veteran who helped build Walt Disney’s DIS.N consumer online business to complete its tricky digital transformation.

FILE PHOTO: Caidence Miller, a 4th grader at Cottage Lake Elementary, works with his grandmother Chrissy Brackett as they try to figure out how to navigate an online learning system. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson/File Photo

The British company, which has endured a tumultuous four years as it adapts from selling textbooks to online courseware, said it had agreed to pay more than normal to secure such a “rare” talent whose experience fits with Pearson’s requirements.

Bird will replace John Fallon, who cut thousands of jobs and sold off assets in response to a string of profit warnings during his more than seven years in charge of the world’s biggest education group.

The new CEO will receive

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