for your 20% discount
Pasadena Gold Room
7:30 - 9pm
movers and shakers
in VC, VR,
Pasadena Economic Development
Partner Cultural Event
July 26, 6-9pm
Artosino Gallery, NYC
Silicon Dragon panel at Synch 2017 with VC types Jim Mao, Shuo Chen,
Coolest VR Startup Angles Its Way
One of the more fascinating startups in the ever-so-heated virtual reality field has to be Spaces. A
DreamWorks Animation spin-out in Los Angeles funded to the tune of $39.5 million by U.S., Chinese and Japanese investors, the 16-month-old is doing something that seems fairly far out -- designing virtual reality theme parks in China.
These VR attractions are in prototype stage now at large-sized back lots in LA, Orlando and China, and are set to open by early next year in at least two key Chinese locations. This comes through a $30 million joint venture with Chinese theme park operator
Songcheng Performance in May 2016, celebrated at a formal ceremony where the
Blue Man Group performed. Now, Spaces' virtual reality attractions will reach 23 million thrill seekers in China who want to experience the latest enhanced rides, stage shows and live-streaming video content -- all without getting nauseous.
We want to make VR part of the attraction and provide a good first-time experience -- engaging, exciting and fun," said Spaces CEO and co-founder
Shiraz Akmal, who is directing a team of 40
imagineers, filmmakers, and video game creators to get going.
Akmal will be speaking about how his startup has gotten into China and collected major VC funding at
Spaces get into China so fast and seemingly so easily? Akmal said it helped to have 10 years of previous experience in building the China business for video game developer and publisher
THQ. "All those years in China finally paid off," he said. "It's not an overnight thing."
But that's clearly not all.
Spaces team in virtual space
Warburg Pincus has led a $60 million, Series B investment in logisicts robot maker Geek.
Uoolu, an app that helps Chinese millennials buy overseas properties, has raised a $50 million RMB A round.
Cherubic Ventures is an investor.
Two USC seniors walked into Sequoia Capital with a fishbowl-style VR headset and landed $1.5 million for their startup Mira. Go figure!
LeEco sells off car-hailing service to private equity firm
Hollywood is having a tough time in China. Ticket sales from U.S. movies were basically flat for the first half of 2017, although overall imports were up 35%. That's one reason why Hollywood has been pushing hard for film concessions from the Chinese government.
When a Chinese umbrella-sharing startup loses all of its 300,000 umbrellas, it's rain, rain go away!
Enough Is Enough, Silicon Valley!
by Melissa Guzy,
Co-founder & Managing Partner, Arbor Ventures
Sexism in the Valley might be in the news lately but for any women entrepreneurs or VCs, this behavior has been the "norm".
Over the last 17 years as a Venture Capitalist, I have never sat on a Board of Directors with another woman.
While 7% of partners at venture funds are women, the number for those who sit on the investment committees are much lower. To resolve this imbalance in the future, we need more women entrepreneurs with startup experience that can provide mentorship.
The Valley must change and tech entrepreneurs as well as Venture Capitalists must realize that diversity is positively powerful.
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