Pixvana, a virtual reality technology startup, has launched today with a $6 million investment led by Madrona Venture Group with participation from Paul Allen's Vulcan Capital, and angel investors. Pixvana is developing a cloud-based technology platform that dramatically improves the immersive video viewing experience for VR and augmented reality applications across a broad set of viewing devices. The company plans to bring it to market in 2016.
The founding Pixvana team has been deeply involved in digital video and entertainment content production, delivery and software platforms for more than two decades. Headed by successful entrepreneur and digital media exec Forest Key, Pixvana is solving the challenges inherent in creating and delivering high quality VR and AR video.
"There is incredible momentum in the VR space and it is clear that outstanding VR video will be a central pillar to the success of the medium," said Tim Porter, managing director, Madrona Venture Group. "It's exciting to back the Pixvana team that has been at the forefront of the massive shifts we have already seen in the industry - from film to digital and from TV to web and mobile video. This team has the experience and vision to create the industry standard technology platform for VR video."
"It is clear that just as in the early days of web video, which was hard for consumers to configure on their devices and often stuttery and unsatisfying to watch, VR video is facing similar challenges," said Forest Key, Pixvana CEO. "I couldn't be more excited to work with this incredible team as we make VR video a reality for content producers and crucially, make viewing video on VR headsets a profoundly magical experience for consumers."
Also investing in the company are notable angels including former Microsoft Developer Tools division executive S. Somasegar, and aQuantive co-founder Mike Galgon, both of whom will join the company's board of directors, along with Porter.