Schilling Hurls Losses on $75M Gov't Loan In 38 Studios Bankruptcy
Updated to reflect added media reports of federal, state inquiries
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- After hanging up the cleats, former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling is throwing in the towel on 38 Studios, the video game developer he founded and received millions in government aid to grow.
Schilling's company, a maker of role-playing video games like Kingdoms of Amalur, filed for bankruptcy on Thursday in a quick demise that's likely to cost Rhode Island taxpayers millions of dollars in losses.
As part of the filing, the company entered a Chapter 7 liquidation in a Delaware bankruptcy court, listing debts in excess of $100 million but assets of just between $10 million and $50 million. Much of that debt is likely owed to taxpayers after 38 Studios took $75 million in government financing to move from Massachusetts to Rhode Island, as part of what was to be a job-creating investment in the struggling state.
For the former right-handed hurler, the red ink he's bled on New England may be a stinging memory after he previously won a critical American League Championship Series game against the New York Yankees in the Sox's 2004 World Series run on what looked to be a bleeding ankle.
Under the liquidation filing, a court-appointed trustee will sell off the video game software company's assets and distribute the proceeds to creditors such as the State of Rhode Island, which had an 11.2% unemployment rate as of April, the second highest in the U.S.
In 2011, with the backing of cash and bonds from the Rhode Island Economic Development Corp., Schilling moved 38 Studios from Massachusetts to the state's capital Providence and spent all of the near $50 million received in debt financing, according to Bloomberg reports citing Rosemary Booth Gallogly, the state director of revenue. The remaining $25 million in debt and cash are currently held in reserve accounts, Gallogly said.
The company, founded in 2006 and which released its first game "Kingdoms of Amalur" through video games giant Electronic Arts(EA) in 2012, had pledged its video-game assets as collateral to repay the bonds.
In its bankrutpcy filing, 38 Studios Providence-based unit listed claims of $151 million and assets of $21.7 million. Its Baltimore division, called Big Huge Games listed $121.4 million of liability and under $1 million of assets. Debt, interest and other liabilities to the State of Rhode Island amount to $115.9 million, the filing shows.