Canterbury Park Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:CPHC) announced today that it has begun to implement a reduction in its workforce of roughly 10%. This elimination of approximately 60 full and part-time positions will be completed by the end of October 2008. The reductions reflect the Company’s commitment to controlling costs as its revenues continue to be adversely impacted by difficult economic conditions and increased competition. Canterbury Park also announced it has suspended its management bonus plan and ESOP contribution for fiscal 2008.
“This was a very difficult decision, but these actions are necessary given the challenges that we are facing. The downturn in the nation’s economy has had a significant adverse effect on our card room and pari-mutuel revenues,” stated Randy Sampson, Chief Executive Officer of Canterbury Park. “Additionally, increased competition from a new racetrack and card room in the Twin Cities and from unlawful Internet wagering has negatively impacted our business. Unfortunately, the decrease in revenues forces us to reduce our workforce and make other changes to align our resources with current business levels. It is important to note that we are not alone in this - racing and gaming venues nationwide have been hit hard by the weak economy.”
According to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association and Equibase Company, pari-mutuel wagering on U.S. races decreased 9.85 percent during the third quarter compared to 2007. As with pari-mutuel wagering, the casino industry nationwide has experienced declines due to increased fuel costs and the weak economic environment.
“Gaming is a discretionary activity for our customers, and as such, we are impacted when households have to tighten their belts,” Sampson said. “We will continue to focus on providing great customer service and enhancing our marketing and promotions to encourage participation at Canterbury Park. In addition, we have a solid balance sheet including no debt which will help us weather this difficult storm.”
About Canterbury Park: Canterbury Park hosts pari-mutuel wagering and “unbanked” card games at its facility in Shakopee, Minnesota. Pari-mutuel wagering is offered on live thoroughbred and quarter horse races each summer, and simulcast wagering on races held at out-of-state racetracks is available year-round. Canterbury Park’s Card Club hosts a variety of poker and casino style card games 24 hours a day. The Company also derives revenues from related services and activities such as concessions, parking, admissions, programs, and from other entertainment and special events held at the facility. To learn more about Canterbury Park, visit our website at www.canterburypark.com.
Cautionary Statement: This release contains or may contain forward-looking statements based on management’s beliefs and assumptions. Such statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause results to vary materially. Please refer to the Company’s SEC filings for a discussion of such factors.