Demand for Pearson’s online learning offsets COVID hit

Global education group Pearson said COVID-19 and a tight labor market had hit enrolments at U.S. community colleges but growth in online learning and testing meant it remained on track for its full-year targets.

The British company said revenue from its Virtual Learning division had grown by 14% in the first nine months of the year and English Language Learning sales rose by 15% as international travel and visa testing resumed.

Its new Pearson+ app was being used by more than two million people. “That’s pretty good going for 12 weeks,” CEO Andy Bird told Reuters.

Solid demand for its services helped offset ongoing pressures in Pearson’s U.S. Higher Education courseware division, where sales fell 9%, partly due to lower enrolments at community colleges.

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