Performance Analysis of Indie Gaming Projects on Crowdfunding Platforms: Evidence from Kickstarter.com
Research question: The aim of this paper is to examine the financial success of projects in game development industry in comparison with to projects in other industries hosted on crowdfunding platform Kickstarter.com. Motivation: We live in the world of technology where companies arise and disappear on daily basis. The traditional way of financing was expanded with alternative online platforms. Our goal was to conduct an empirical analysis of one crowdfunding platform (Kickstarter.com) in order to understand if technology projects are doing better than other projects. If they do, what are the key factors for their success? Idea: Our goal was to better understand how crowdfunding model supports small indie development projects and projects in other industries. Data: We used the data of 148.510 companies applied for crowdfunding financing between 2015 and 2020, published on the web crawler platform Web Robots. Tools: All statistical analyses were performed using statistical software IBM® SPSS® Statistics v.21. The data were presented using standard methods of non-parametric descriptive statistics (absolute and relative frequencies for medians and interquartile ranges for numeric outcomes). For testing of statistical significance of difference between two groups we used the Pearson´s Chi-Quadrat test and Mann-Whitney test, where appropriate. The effect size for the 2x2 analyses was estimated using Odds ratios. Findings: The paper analyses the financial success of gaming and not gaming projects and tries to identify key factors for successful funding. We found a statistically significant higher prevalence of successful financing in game development projects, with 2.3 times higher odds of successful funding compared to not-gaming industry. Our analysis of quantitative indicators such as the number of backers, goal amount, pledged amount, pledged amount per backer and pledged to goal ratio also showed that projects in game development statistically outperformed projects in other categories. Promising game projects were supported by three times more backers on average and attained almost as double funds as other projects, while still sporting more modest pledged amounts per backer. These findings support the notion of crowdfunding being a viable modality of financing independent game development in emerging economies. Contribution: This paper expands the existing research related to the crowdfunding platforms and indie development companies and formulates key factors for successful financing for technology startup firms.
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