Thomson Corporation was one of the world's largest information
companies. It was established in 1989 following a merger between
International Thomson Organisation Ltd (ITOL) and Thomson
Newspapers. In 2008, it purchased
Reuters Group to form Thomson
Thomson Corporation was active in financial services,
healthcare sectors, law, science and technology research and tax and
accounting sectors. The company operated through five segments (2007
onwards): Thomson Financial, Thomson Healthcare, Thomson Legal,
Thomson Scientific and Thomson Tax & Accounting.
Until 2007, Thomson was also a major worldwide provider of higher
education textbooks, academic information solutions and reference
materials. On 26 October 2006, Thomson announced the proposed sale of
its Thomson Learning assets. In May 2007, Thomson Learning was
Apax Partners and subsequently renamed
Cengage Learning in
July. The Thomson Learning brand was used to the end of August
Subsequently, on 15 October 2007,
Educational Testing Service
Educational Testing Service (ETS)
finalized acquisition of Thomson's Prometric. Thomson sold its global
network of testing centres in 135 countries, for a reported $435
Prometric now operates as a wholly owned subsidiary of
On 15 May 2007, the
Thomson Corporation reached an agreement with
Reuters to combine the two companies, a deal valued at $17.2 billion.
On 17 April 2008 the new company was created under the name of Thomson
Reuters. The chief executive officer of
Thomson Reuters is Jim Smith,
and the chairman is David Thomson, formerly of the Thomson
Corporation. Although it was officially a Canadian company and
remained Canadian owned, Thomson was run from its operational
headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut, in the United States.
1.1 Transition to business information
4 Corporate governance
6 Further reading
7 External links
Thomson had grown from a single Canadian newspaper, the Timmins Daily
Press, acquired in 1934 by Roy Thomson, 1st Baron Thomson of Fleet,
into a global media concern. The Baron acquired his first non-Canadian
newspaper the Independent of St. Petersburg, Florida in 1952 and the
next year it expanded to the United Kingdom. It once owned several
prominent newspapers in the UK, including
The Times and The Scotsman,
and it owned Scottish Television.
In the 1960s, Thomson's publishing realm expanded further to include
Thomson Publication (UK), a consumer magazine and book publishing
house, and The Times. In 1965, Thomson Newspapers, Ltd. was formed as
a publicly traded company in Canada. Roy Thomson's prolific endeavors
in publishing had earned him a hereditary title, Lord Thomson of
Fleet. Yet, Thomson's interests moved beyond publishing with the
creation of Thomson Travel and acquisition of
Britannia Airways in
1965 and 1971, and a foray into a consortium exploring the North
Sea for oil and gas. Thomson used its oil profits to buy small
newspapers in the United States, starting with the acquisition of
Brush-Moore Newspapers in 1967 for $72 million, at the time the
largest sale of newspapers.
By the end of the 1970s, Thomson Newspapers' circulation in the United
States had surpassed the 1 million mark. The merger of Thomson
Newspapers and the
International Thomson Organization in 1989 created
the Thomson Corporation.
Over the years, the company has withdrawn from its holdings in the oil
and gas business, the travel industry and department stores.
When Kenneth Thomson took over from his father Roy in 1976, the
company was worth about $500 million. At Kenneth's death in June 2006,
the company was valued at about $29.3 billion.
Transition to business information
In 1978, the acquisition of Wadsworth
Publishing provided Thomson with
its first entry into specialised information, college textbooks and
professional books. (In 2007, Thomson Learning, including the
Wadsworth imprint, was sold and renamed as Cengage Learning.)
Starting in the mid-1990s, Thomson invested further in specialised
information services (but this time providing them in digital format)
and began selling off its newspapers. That was about the time Richard
J. Harrington, an accountant, became chief executive officer of the
company. One of the first moves came when Thomson spent $3.4 billion
to acquire the West
Publishing Company, a legal information provider
in Eagan, MN.
In recent years, Thomson provided much of the specialised information
content the world's financial, legal, research and medical
organizations rely on every day to make business-critical decisions
and drive innovation. While it remained a publishing company, early
and aggressive investment in electronic delivery had become a key
"Except for its educational division, which still publishes a
substantial number of conventional textbooks, Thomson had the good
fortune to move into these businesses as customers were demanding
electronic delivery of their information," according to a 3 July 2006
article in the New York Times. "In some markets, Thomson was able to
move past other players who were more cautious about digital
Some of Thomson's brands are better known than the company name
itself. Its brands include Thomson ONE, Westlaw, FindLaw, BarBri,
Pangea3, Physician's Desk Reference, RIA, Tax and Accounting (tax and
accounting software and services for Accountants) Creative Solutions,
Quickfinder, DISEASEDEX, DrugREAX, Medstat, Thomson First Call,
Checkpoint, EndNote, Derwent World Patent Index, SAEGIS, Micropatent,
Aureka, Faxpat, OptiPat, Just Files, Corporate Intelligence, InfoTrac,
Delphion, Arco Test Prep, Peterson's Directories, NewsEdge, TradeWeb,
Web of Science
Web of Science and the Arden Shakespeare. Thomson formerly owned
Jane's Information Group. These information sources are produced by
the many companies of Thomson, including West Publishing, Thomson
Financial, ISI, Thomson Gale, Dialog Corporation, Brookers, Carswell,
CCBN, Course Technology, Gardiner-Caldwell, IHI, Lawbook Co,
Wadsworth, Thomson CompuMark and Sweet & Maxwell.
In 2003, the
Thomson Corporation bought the Chilton automotive
In late 2004, the company sold its Thomson Media group to Investcorp.
The B2B publishing group, which features such titles as American
Banker, National Mortgage News, and the Bond Buyer, is now known as
In October 2006, the company confirmed it would sell the Thomson
Learning market group in three parts. The first part, corporate
education and training (NETg), has agreed to be sold to
Apax announced its acquisition of Thomson's higher
education business on 11 May 2007, for $7.5 billion in cash
Thomson Reuters New Zealand Limited has been publishing and updating
New Zealand law
New Zealand law since 1910, formerly as John Friend
Ltd, to Brooker and Friend Ltd, to Brookers, to Thomson Brookers'.
Thomson had divested many of its traditional media assets – or
combined them with digital products – and had moved toward a larger
reliance on information technology services and products.[citation
On 1 January 2004, Thomson adopted a new accounting standard, which
required restatement of all prior periods. The company restated its
financial reports accordingly.
Members of the last board of directors of Thomson were as follows:
David K.R. Thomson (chairman of the board since 2002), W. Geoffrey
Beattie, Richard Harrington, Ron D. Barbaro, Mary Cirillo, Robert
Daleo, Steven Denning, Maureen Darkes, Roger Martin, Vance Opperman,
John M. Thompson, Peter Thomson, Richard Thomson and John A. Tory.
The Thomson family owned 70% of the company.
When Kenneth Thomson died in June 2006, control of the family fortune
passed on to
David K.R. Thomson under a plan put together decades
earlier by company founder Roy Thomson.
"David, my grandson, will have to take his part in the running of the
organisation and David's son, too," Roy wrote in his 1975
autobiography. "With the fortune that we will leave to them go also
responsibilities. These Thomson boys that come after Ken are not going
to be able, even if they want to, to shrug off these
The Thomson family controlled the
Thomson Corporation through a
family-owned entity, the Woodbridge Company, based in Toronto. (Along
with 70% of Thomson Corporation, Woodbridge also owns a 40% stake in
CTVglobemedia, which now owns the Globe and Mail daily newspaper in
Toronto and CTV, Canada's largest commercial TV network.) David K.R.
Thomson and his brother, Peter Thomson, became co-chairmen of
Woodbridge after their father's death.
^ a b The
Thomson Corporation History. FundingUniverse.
Thomson Reuters Corp". Google Finance. Retrieved 2007-05-08.
^ "Thomson Learning Announces New Name - CENGAGE Learning" (Press
release). PRNewswire. 2007-07-24. Retrieved 2007-07-29.
^ "ETS Acquires Prometric" (Press release). ETS. 2007-10-15. Retrieved
^ "History of The
Thomson Corporation – FundingUniverse".
www.fundinguniverse.com. Retrieved 2018-02-21.
Thomson Corporation - Company Profile, Information, Business
Description, History, Background Information on The Thomson
Corporation". www.referenceforbusiness.com. Retrieved
^ Newspapers: Strength in the Afternoon, Time (magazine), September 8,
^ a b c d e f g h i j "In Canada, the Torch is Passed on a Quiet
but Profitable Legacy," by Ian Austen, The
New York Times
New York Times (Business
Day section) p. C1, July 3, 2006; accessed on July 3, 2006.
^ Thomson Learning press release
^ "Chilton Auto Parts, Chilton Repair Manuals for Sale".
www.autopartswarehouse.com. Retrieved 2018-02-21.
^ "About Us".
Thomson Reuters New Zealand. Retrieved December 3,
Goldenberg, Susan (1984). The Thomson Empire. New York: Beaufort
Books. ISBN 0825302595.
Prochnau, William (October 1998). "In Lord Thomson's Realm". American
Journalism Review. College Park, Maryland: University of Maryland
Mary H. Munroe (2004). "
Thomson Corporation Timeline". The Academic
Publishing Industry: A Story of
Merger and Acquisition. Archived from
the original on 2014-10-20 – via Northern Illinois University.
Practical Law Company
Sweet & Maxwell (IDS)
Thomson Reuters Indices
Thomson Reuters Business Classification
Thomson Reuters/CoreCommodity CRB Index
Thomson Reuters Realized Volatility Index
The Thomson Corporation
3 Times Square
The Woodbridge Compa