MIT Sloan Business in Gaming Conference: Red Sox’s Curt Schilling, MMORPG pioneer Gordon Walton, and diverse panels to explore the business side of the video game industry

New business plan competition open to video game start-up and interactive media companies

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., April 6, 2010 — What’s the Next Big Thing in store for the video game industry? What will generate the most revenue? What is destined to flop and why?

On Friday, April 16, the 2nd Annual MIT Sloan Business and Gaming (BiG) Conference, whose theme this year is “Competing on Analytics”, will bring together industry leaders, game developers and designers, academics, and MBAs from leading business schools for an in-depth exploration of the business side of the video game industry.

“Our goal is to pull back the curtain on creative ways innovators are using analysis to raise funds, shorten development time, maximize marketing budgets, retain players, and learn from analogs in other industries,” says Christine Kenney, MIT Sloan MBA Class of 2010 and a conference organizer.

In response to the success of the inaugural conference, organizers have doubled the number of speakers and tripled its seating capacity by moving the event to the Microsoft New England Research and Development Center, One Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA. Panel discussions will include such topics as:

  • The Next Big Thing
  • The Changing Face of Social Games
  • Game Communities for Fun and Profit
  • Hollywood, Music and Gaming
  • Non-Traditional Marketing Strategies for the Games Industry
  • How to Build and Finance a Gaming Startup
  • Gaming Company Financial Analytics
  • Mass Effect: The State of the Video Gaming Industry in Massachusetts

The Boston Red Sox’s three-time World Series champion Curt Schilling, whose passion for baseball fueled his winning performances, is equally passionate about video games. Schilling will speak about access to talent, capital, and regulatory support for early stage development studios in the Commonwealth. He became involved on the business end of the games industry more than a decade ago in a relationship with Sony Online Entertainment, and, later, as the official spokesperson for the 3DO Company’s High Heat Baseball. In 2006, Schilling brought his passion for games to life with the inception of 38 Studios, a video game development and publishing company.

Gordon Walton, a Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG) and current co-studio director of BioWare–Austin will serve as the key note. One of Walton and BioWare’s current projects is the hotly anticipated “Star Wars: The Old Republic” MMORPG.

New this year is a business plan competition sponsored by the MIT Business in Gaming Conference and Foley Hoag LLP. This competition is geared towards start-up companies in the video game, interactive media and related industries. Two winning entries will be eligible to receive up to $5,000 in free legal services from Foley Hoag relating to their new ventures. Those interested should visit http://www.mitbig.com/…BPC.pdf (PDF) for details.

“The MIT Sloan BiG Conference is the only unscripted forum for industry professionals to focus on the business opportunities and pitfalls that make or break a game on its path from development to market,” says Kenney. “We hope other professionals and enthusiasts alike will join us.”

For more information, please contact Jason Domina at jason.domina.mitbig@gmail.com or 857-222-6581.

To register, please visit http://www.mitbig.com

For Media Inquiries

Paul Denning
Director of Media Relations
Tel: 617-253-0576
Fax: 617-253-5875
E-mail: denning@mit.edu

Patricia Favreau
Associate Director of Media Relations
Tel: 617-253-3492
Fax: 617-253-5875
E-mail: pfavreau@mit.edu