Alternative Funding for Game Development
Independent game development is stronger than ever and this panel will highlight alternative sources of funding that are not dependent on the traditional publisher funding model. Did you know that the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) funds video game creation? The NEH's Michael Shirley will offer insight into their grant writing process. Kellee Santiago will discuss Indie Fund's commitment to help indie developers get, and stay, financially independent. Kickstarter's Cindy Au will review the new crowdfunding milestones reached with their vibrant, gaming community. Ted Regulski, from Sony (SCEA), will talk about Sony's PubFund. Matt Kozlov will explain how Moonshark, backed by CAA and Qualcomm, funds and publishes mobile games by pairing Hollywood creatives with developers. Join us in an informative panel that will walk through processes, present examples of successful projects funded and provide an occasion for attendees to discuss their projects with these panelists.
Cindy is Community Director at Kickstarter, the world's largest funding platform for creative projects. She enjoys working closely with users, and spends much of her time building relationships within the Games and Comics communities. She has previously worked as a writer and editor for a variety of startups and media organizations covering topics in games, comics, and geek culture. She holds a PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she taught literature and media studies. She currently resides in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
Kellee Santiago is President and Co-Founder of thatgamecompany. thatgamecompany’s goal is to make video games that communicate different emotional experiences, and expand the communicative possibilities of games. Their first two commercial releases, “flOw”, and “Flower,” went on to become award-winning and two of the top downloaded games on PSN, and their current project is the experimental online experience, "Journey."
Kellee speaks around the world at video game, business, and entertainment conferences on the possibilities of video games, entrepreneurship, and better methods for video game development. In 2010 she became a TEDFellow, and was recognized as one of The Ten Most Influential Women in Games of the Decade. She is also a partner in IndieFund, which aims to support the growth of games as a medium by helping indie developers get financially independent and stay financially independent.
Matt (aka “Koz”) is the CEO of Moonshark (previously known as Creative Mobile Labs), a startup backed by CAA and Qualcomm bringing to market stunningly original mobile entertainment properties (apps) by pairing the most creative minds in Hollywood with the world’s best mobile developers. Moonshark funds, produces, markets and publishes app concepts developed in partnership with CAA talent, finding the best developers to bring these apps to life. Prior to working at Moonshark, Matt was Vice President, New Products and Services at Sony Music (SME). In this role he was responsible for bringing to market new revenue-generating digital offerings that leveraged SME’s artists, music and brands. He also served as Vice President of SME’s Web Products team where he was responsible for the strategy, development and execution of the company's consumer-facing websites including artist sites, Facebook pages, and MySpace profiles. Matt has also worked at Yahoo! (corporate strategy, product development) and Bain and Company (management consulting). He graduated from Harvard, where he studied economics.
Michael Shirley is a Senior Program Officer in the Division of Public Programs at the National Endowment for the Humanities. In his role at the Endowment, Michael fosters meaningful collaborations between media producers and scholars in the creation of interactive digital media projects, documentary films, radio and television programs. Media projects that he has advised and shepherded through the funding and development process at NEH include "The People v. Leo Frank;" American Experience: "We Shall Remain;" American Masters: "Woody Guthrie, Ain’t Got No Home;" Ken Burns’ "Prohibition;" and Stanley Nelson’s "Freedom Riders;" Nick Spitzer’s "American Routes;" and "Afropop Worldwide."
Over the years Michael has served as an adviser and presenter at the House of Docs at the Sundance Film Festival and as a presenter at the World Congress of History Producers (now History Makers), South by Southwest, Miami International Film Festival, DC International Film Festival, the American Museum Association, Museums and the Web,and Games for Change.