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Edge invests GBP1.7m in OTHERWORLD

Edge Investments (Edge) has invested GBP1.7 million in OTHERWORLD, a UK out-of-home Virtual Reality (VR) experience. 

Edge is leading the GBP2.9 million Series A funding round alongside a follow-on investment from Imbiba, a specialist investor in leisure and lifestyle brands, and participation from games industry veterans Chris Lee and Rupert Loman.

OTHERWORLD offers immersive virtual reality experiences across entertainment, arts, education and wellness. OTHERWORLD guests enter their own ‘immersion pod’, which integrates premium VR hardware with dynamic heat, wind and rumble effects. Each pod is connected to the same place: a virtual island paradise where friends and family can explore the best that VR has to offer together.

Since its launch in 2019, OTHERWORLD’s site in Shoreditch, East London has hosted over 50,000 guests, including celebrities Adele, Skepta, Jonathan Ross, KSI and Fnatic, and it will be opening in London Victoria’s Nova development in July 2021 and at Bennetts Hill, Birmingham in September 2021 This success has been accredited with plaudits from the FRAME Awards 2020 and a nomination for the VR Awards 2020.

The new investment comes as many brick-and-mortar businesses emerge from the challenges of the pandemic. OTHERWORLD has thrived since reopening after the partial relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions, selling out for weeks in advance with market-leading footfall and revenues. It has been predicted that by 2023, location-based entertainment will make up around 11 per cent of the VR industry, with the market expected to range from USD1.5 billion to USD3 billion globally. As a market leader, OTHERWORLD remains well placed to both support and benefit from this transition.

Edge’s investment will support OTHERWORLD as it looks to expand its UK footprint, sign up international franchise partners and continue to develop its proprietary VR platform and experiences.

The investment was led by Niall Santamaria, who has joined the Board as a director.

David Glick, CEO and Founder of Edge Investments, says: “Edge Investments champions entrepreneurs who harness creativity and technology to solve problems, improve lives and advance the world. The OTHERWORLD experience does this brilliantly – a virtual island paradise in the cloud, the best VR experiences across entertainment, arts, education and wellness, reached through unique, multi-sensory ‘immersion pods’ in its growing network of city centre venues.”

Niall Santamaria, Investment Manager at Edge Investments, says: “The team at OTHERWORLD share Edge’s vision for VR and immersion to become a cornerstone of story-telling in the future. VR has the potential to deliver a range of entertainment, enterprise and educational content, which can all be delivered through OTHERWORLD. The team has the creative vision and operational acuity, to continue to grow and dominate this emerging category at the intersection of creativity and technology. OTHERWORLD has exciting plans for expansion and new products, and we look forward to helping it achieve these aims.”

Chris Adams, CEO of OTHERWORLD, says: “We’re delighted to be working with David, Niall and the brilliant team at Edge. Edge brings a rare and distinctive appreciation of what it takes to build compelling consumer experiences from their work across the creative economy. They’re a great partner to support us in our mission to transport millions to OTHERWORLD.”

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