World Poker Tour Enterprises Inc. (WPTE) made two announcements today concerning the direction of the company. After a review of strategic alternatives, the company has decided to remain independent, and the company signed a deal with Macau Cable in Macau and MediaCorp in Singapore to air the World Poker Tour (WPT) in southeast Asia.
"We are pleased with the progress we continue to make in growing our business and the WPT brand. During the second quarter we delivered a combined nineteen World Poker Tour and Professional Poker Tour episodes and added several new sponsors," said Steve Lipscomb, founder and CEO of WPTE. "We believe that the global poker industry continues to provide opportunities for our growth, and we are very optimistic about our future as an independent company."
In February, WPTE engaged Thomas Weisel Partners LLC as its financial advisor to help evaluate the best direction for the company to take. It was decided that continuing with a stand-alone business strategy would be best for the company and also provide opportunity to enhance shareholder value.
One of the steps the company made to increase their value was to increase the broadcast radius of their flagship show. The agreements with Macau Cable and MediaCorp increases the number of territories where the WPT airs to 154.
"These two deals give us a secure foothold in Southeast Asia, along with our deals in the Philippines," said Gary MacKinney, WPTE executive director of international distribution. "With the long history of gaming in Macau and the recent licenses issued to a number of international gaming giants who will build or run major new casinos, this area is only going to get hotter."
Macau Cable will air WPT Season 1, and MediaCorp will air WPT Season 2. The WPTE also recently made a deal to sell its Professional Poker Tour (PPT) to Canada's City TV. The PPT currently airs on the Travel Channel.
"WPTE's continued international broadcast expansion has fueled the worldwide poker phenomenon and has given us first position in the increasingly larger global poker marketplace," Lipscomb said. "The demand for our programming has been gratifying and the speed of growth exhilarating."