Cowlitz Bancorporation Holds Hearing With Nasdaq Panel

Jun 28, 2010, 20:40 ET from Cowlitz Bancorporation

LONGVIEW, Wash., June 28 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Cowlitz Bancorporation (Nasdaq: CWLZ) (the "Company") announced today that its hearing before the Nasdaq Stock Market ("Nasdaq") Hearings Panel (the "Panel") was held on June 24, 2010. At the hearing, the Company presented an updated plan to regain compliance with two Nasdaq Listing Rules with which it is not in compliance and requested a 90-day exception to the continued listing standards. The Company is actively seeking capital and is in discussions with several potential investors. The additional time was requested to allow the Company to remain listed on Nasdaq while continuing in its efforts to complete a capital transaction.

The Company previously announced that on May 12, 2010, it received a delisting determination letter from Nasdaq due to the Company not being in compliance with the minimum 500,000 publicly held shares requirement set forth in Listing Rule 5550(a)(4). For Nasdaq purposes, the number of publicly held shares is equal to total shares outstanding less any shares held by officers, directors or beneficial owners of more than 10 percent of the total shares outstanding. The Company also received notice from Nasdaq on May 18, 2010 that the Company's total stockholders' equity reported as of March 31, 2010 fell below the required minimum of $2.5 million for continued listing under Listing Rule 5550(b)(1). The Company requested a hearing before the Panel to appeal the delisting determination. Such request stayed the suspension of trading and delisting of the Company's common shares from The Nasdaq Capital Market pending the Panel's decision after the hearing.

Under Nasdaq's Listing Rules, the Panel may, in its discretion, grant an exception to the continued listing standards for a maximum of 180 calendar days from the date of the delisting determination, or through November 8, 2010. However, there can be no assurances that the Panel will grant such exception. The Panel has up to 30 days from the date of the hearing to make its decision.

In the event the Company's stock is ultimately delisted after the appeals process, the Company anticipates that its common stock would be eligible to trade on the OTC Bulletin Board or in the "Pink Sheets." However, securities may become eligible for such trading only if a market maker makes application to register and quote the security in accordance with SEC Rule 15c2-11, and such application is cleared. Only a market maker may file such application.

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the "Safe-Harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which management believes are a benefit to shareholders. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements and, except as required by applicable law, we undertake no obligation to update any such statements. Statements that are not historical or current facts, including statements about beliefs and expectations, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially from those discussed in this press release as a result of risk factors identified in the Company's Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009, and other filings with the SEC. The Company makes forward-looking statements in this press release related to its capital raise efforts and the eligibility of its common stock to trade on the OTC Bulletin Board or in the "Pink Sheets."

SOURCE Cowlitz Bancorporation