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Quepasa.com looking for white knight

Quepasa.com became the latest struggling Internet company to plea for help Friday, announcing that it had tabbed the investment banking firm Friedman, Billings, Ramsey & Co. to find someone to bail it out.

Quepasa.com (Nasdaq: PASA) said it authorized the firm to consider several options, including strategic alliances, significant equity investments in the company, a merger or the sale of the company or significant portions of its business.

Earlier this month, the Hispanic community Web site said it would take a non-material restructuring charge in its second quarter after slashing more than 30 percent of its workforce.

In its first quarter, Quepasa.com posted a loss of $10.7 million, or 68 cents a share, on sales of $856,585.

Analysts expect it to lose 65 cents a share this quarter and $2.16 a share in the fiscal year. It's not expected to turn a profit until the third quarter of fiscal 2001.

Its shares slipped to a 52-week low of 1 5/16 Friday.

After a initial public offering in June, the stock moved as high as 26 7/8 in July.

Both analysts covering the stock rate it either a "buy" or "strong buy."

Reuters contributed to this report.