I get the impression that WW is one of the few companies that made RPGs that is still financially viable without relying on some other product line (Munchkin in the case of SJGames), but that could be based on ignorance. Did WW get bought out because it was a valuable purchase or because they were looking for a buyer?
White Wolf themselves described it as more of a merger¹ as did CCP². WWG are the junior partner in that merger, but in joining with a computer games company, they are no longer reliant upon the vagaries of the market for RPG's. CCP has steady revenue, but needs more story developers than they can afford full time; WWG lacks steady revenue, like most RPG companies, but has steady supply for developers.
I don't know if they've ever been close to bankruptcy, but mergers are not normally a response to serious indebtedness. I do recall there was a financial hurt after Rein•Hagen left...