Pearson wants to sell its stake in Game of Thrones publisher Random House -- shares are crashing

White walker game of thronesCourtesy HBOA shot from the Game of Thrones TV series.

LONDON — Shares in Pearson, the publishing and education group, crashed 23% in UK trading on Wednesday after the company issued a profit warning and said it would sell its stake in Random House.

Pearson owns a little less than half of the book group, which publishes the Game of Thrones series, in a joint-venture with Bertelsmann.

“With the integration of Penguin Random House complete, and with greater industry-wide stability on digital terms, we intend to issue an exit notice regarding our 47% stake in Penguin Random House to our JV partner Bertelsmann in the contractual window, with a view to selling our stake or recapitalising the business and extracting a dividend,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

Pearson said it saw an “unprecedented decline in Q4 2016 in our North American higher education courseware business,” knocking profit guidance for the full year by £180 million. The firm also scrapped its guidance for 2018.

The collapse in shares is the sharpest on record for Pearson, with data going back to 1986.

Here’s how it looks:

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