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World Poker Tour sold
The World Poker Tour has been sold.
Pending stockholder approval, a privately held investment group under the name Gamynia Limited has agreed to pay $9,075,000 plus a percentage of future revenues for almost all of WPT Enterprises assets, including its television, sponsorship, distribution and licensing units.
The agreement will also see Gamynia jump full force into the online gaming market and, as a result, it has secured the services of Hardway Investments Ltd., an online gaming marketing company that has worked with Titan Poker and several other online gaming sites in the past.
"We believe this transaction will enable the World Poker Tour to realize its full potential across both its existing businesses and the lucrative online gaming market," said Steve Lipscomb, President and CEO of WPT Enterprises.
According to the terms of the deal, the WPT will sell its television library, but retain cash investments and future foreign sponsorship revenues from Seasons Four, Five and Six of the World Poker Tour and Season One of the Professional Poker Tour to PartyGaming and the license of Season Seven of the World Poker Tour to PokerStars.
WPT Enterprises will keep its office and employees and plans to develop or acquire a non-poker related business.
"After the transaction, WPTE will move forward under a new name and will employ our cash in a new venture by developing a new business or combining, through one or more strategic transactions, with companies that have significant unrealized value or growth potential," Lipscomb added.
The sale must be approved by a majority of WPT Enterprises stockholders, but those representing 39% of the company's stock have already entered into voting agreements with Gamynia.
A stockholders meeting is planned for later in the year and Gamynia expects to complete the transaction in the fourth quarter of 2009.
"The World Poker Tour was the catalyst for the 2003 poker boom in the United States that quickly gave rise to a global poker phenomenon," Lipscomb said.
"The massive international business markets that have evolved from that phenomenon have been dominated and driven by the lucrative online gaming business. The World Poker Tour as a stand-alone entity has struggled to find the appropriate place for its stockholders in this fast evolving market.
"The World Poker Tour brand continues to grow around the world and has managed to make casinos and online gaming concerns cooperate in unique and mutually beneficial ways. In Gamynia, we have found a partner that already understands and fosters a spirit of cooperation in the online marketplace."