government

Statehouse concerned over 38 Studios’ finances

BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/TONY AVELAR
CURT SCHILLING, former Red Sox pitcher and founder of 38 Studios LLC, unveils the new "Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning" video game during the Electronic Arts Inc. annual Studio Showcase in Redwood City, Calif.
Posted 5/14/12

PROVIDENCE – Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee and staff have been meeting with 38 Studios LLC – the video game company founded by former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling – amid fears of ailing finances, according to WPRI-TV, CBS 12.

“We’re concerned and just doing everything possible to ensure that 38 Studios stays part of the Rhode Island community,” Chafee told WPRI.com. “We’re working on different issues with them.”

The R.I. Economic Development Corporation gave Schilling’s video game venture a $75 million taxpayer-backed loan in 2010 to move the company’s headquarters from Massachusetts to Providence and to employ 450 workers in Rhode Island.

As of March 15, 38 Studios had received $49.8 million in cash from the loan, according to WPRI.com. Another $23.4 million was put into a capital reserve fund and a capitalized interest account.

While the company’s first game – Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning – was released in February to positive reviews, the taxpayer-backed loan is funding a different game – Project Copernicus – which was targeted for a September release, although details have remained under wraps, according to the news source.

The concern on Copernicus has grown since 38 Studios was removed from the list of companies scheduled to present at the Los Angeles Electronic Entertainment Expo next month.

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