Houghton Mifflin Co. is selling its college textbook unit to Cengage Learning for $750 million so it can focus on its publishing business geared to kindergarten through 12th grade, as well as trade and reference publications.
Cengage, previously known as Thomson Learning, said yesterday's transaction would help broaden its education products, including textbooks and study guides.
Boston-based Houghton Mifflin and Stamford, Conn.-based Cengage also said they plan to cooperate in expanding distribution of Cengage's book titles into the US market for high school advanced placement textbooks.
Yesterday's cash transaction is expected to close in the first half of next year, subject to conditions including regulatory approval.
Tony Lucki, chairman, president, and chief executive of Houghton Mifflin, said the privately held company's college division "has been an important contributor to Houghton Mifflin for many years, but moving forward we will focus our efforts on our K12, trade, and reference businesses."
The sale will help Houghton Mifflin concentrate on its integration with Orlando, Fla.-based educational publisher Harcourt Education, the company is buying from Reed Elsevier PLC as part of a $4 billion deal disclosed in July.