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The Boston Globe

Ideas

Curt Schilling’s 38 Studios delivers a lesson for investors

Does backing from rich entrepreneurs make for successful companies? Don’t bet on it, a new study says.

In the popular version of how business works, Curt Schilling’s 38 Studios should have been a home run. The video game start-up had a bold vision and top-notch creative talent. In Schilling, it had a well-connected founder with a genuine love of the industry and a public image as a winner. What’s more, the former Red Sox ace had cast the ultimate vote of confidence in his company: He sank tens of millions of dollars of his personal fortune into it.

When the company went bankrupt this spring, many in New England reacted with shock: How could a company backed by a star like Schilling fail so dramatically?

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