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4Kids Entertainment Reportedly Puts Itself Up for Sale (Updated)

posted on by Egan Loo
Yu-Gi-Oh!, Shaman King license holder declines to comment on news report

The paidContent.org website for digital media news is reporting that the 4Kids Entertainment licensing and broadcasting company has put itself up for sale. According to the website's sources, 4Kids is discussing a "selective bidding process" with a few potential buyers. In the past, 4Kids adapted Pokémon, One Piece, Tokyo Mew Mew, Kirby: Right Back At Ya!, Sonic X, and other anime titles for the North American market. Its current properties include Yu-Gi-Oh!, Shaman King, and Dinosaur King from Japan, as well as the card-game-based Chaotic franchise from Denmark.

4Kids reported a narrower 1st quarter net loss of US$2.0 million this year, compared to US$6.4 million in the same period last year. During those same periods, its revenue dropped from US$15 million to US$10.5 million, and its market capitalization is currently below US$25 million. It ended its Saturday morning programming block on the Fox television network in December, but still maintains the CW4Kids children's television block on affiliates of The CW network. It laid off 15% of its workforce in December.

Barry Stagg, senior vice president of corporate communications for 4Kids, told ANN, "It is our policy not to comment on rumors or speculation."

Source: paidContent.org via Wall Street Pit

Update: 4Kids' last profitable year was the fiscal year ending on January 2, 2006. With 12 times their average trading volume, 4Kids' stocks (KDE) rose 9 cents to $1.95 after paidContent.org posted its report at 12:50 p.m. ET. The stocks were up as high as $2.30 before settling down, and the company now has a market capitalization of US$25.79 million at the end of the day.

This article has a follow-up: 4Kids Retains Financial Advisor to Consider Strategies (2009-08-05 13:17)
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