WPT Stock Falls to Lowest Share Price Ever



The stock market in the United States has declined precipitously in recent weeks. News of a possible “bailout” hit the wires on Tuesday night. However, stocks listed on any of the major exchanges in the United States have taken a beating. Among them is the World Poker Tour, which sank to an intraday low of $0.56 on Tuesday, its lowest share price on record. World Poker Tour stock is listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the symbol “WPTE.”

The stock closed up to $0.606 at the close of trading on Tuesday, rebounding from its all-time low. The company is facing de-listing from the NASDAQ and now has about 140 days to push its stock price above $1 and keep it there for 10 consecutive business days, else risk being removed. At the time of writing, the stock’s price had fallen to $0.5999. Over the past 52 weeks, it has ranged between Tuesday’s low of $0.56 to $3.80. It peaked at $26.50 during the week of July 5, 2005, but has since dropped dramatically. It fell through the $10 level during the week of September 12, 2005 and fell past $5 during the week of July 17, 2006.

WPTE has a market cap of $12 million and about 20 million shares outstanding. During the quarter that ended June 29, 2008, the company recorded $5 million in revenue and $2.7 million in cost of revenue, for a gross profit of $2.3 million. However it reported an operating loss of $4 million.

Recently, the company has announced a pair of partnerships with cable channel Fox Sports Net. The sports outlet will air 26 one-hour episodes that comprise Season VII of the World Poker Tour. Seasons I-V aired on The Travel Channel. Season VI aired on GSN, which declined to pick up its exclusive option for Season VII. This sent the WPT looking for a new media partner, which it found in Fox Sports Net just a few months ago. WPT Season VII shows may begin airing sometime before the end of 2008, although no official date has been announced. What is known is that the poker program will occupy a Sunday night time slot, during which Fox Sports Net’s 18 regional stations air national programming.

In addition, beginning this Sunday, October 5th, ClubWPT six-handed tournaments will appear on Fox Sports Net. Average Joes from the WPT’s subscription-based online poker room will battle it out at 4:00pm local time every weekend. Satellite tournaments to qualify for the show can be found on ClubWPT, which is legal in many U.S. states because of its status as a sweepstakes, as opposed to an online gambling site.

Nine days from now, the WPT will invade the Fallsview Casino in Canada for the North American Poker Championship. The CDN $10,300 buy-in tournament will crown a champion on October 16th. The event has three starting days and is a favorite for young American poker players, who are able to gamble legally in Canada at age 18. In many areas in the United States, the legal age to gamble is 21.

After Niagara Falls, the WPT will host the Festa Al Lago, Foxwoods World Poker Finals, Doyle Brunson Five Diamond World Poker Classic, Southern Poker Championship, Borgata Poker Classic, L.A. Poker Classic, WPT Celebrity Invitational, Bay 101 Shooting Star. Foxwoods Poker Classic, and the year-end WPT World Championship.

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