Japan: VR startup Cluster raises $456k from Skyland Ventures, East Ventures, others

Japan-based virtual reality startup Cluster has announced raising JPY 50 million (about $455643.50) in a fundraising round from Skyland Ventures, East Ventures, and other investors, according to a report.

Cluster runs a virtual reality meetup app that allows users to attend events from the comfort of their smart and virtual reality devices that support the Oculus Rift, GearVR, Windows, Mac, iOS and Android operating systems although some features may not be available on various devices.

The company, which was previously known as Fictbox, had secured an undisclosed round of funding from Skyland Ventures’ second fund announced in January 2016.

According to the company’s website, recent events that used Cluster include Unite 2016, a tech and development conference organised by game engine company Unity. Users are represented by their avatars and user names, and can navigate the event virtually with wearable devices.

Virtual reality events are not exactly new although not many companies have jumped on the bandwagon. AltspaceVR, a virtual social networking company, is one, having planned and carried out a press conference in virtual reality entirely in its bid to raise publicity for its new Gear VR version launch.

In an article detailing the changes virtual reality will bring to the event management industry, Jennifer Nguyen wrote, “The potential uses of VR in events are limitless. Organizers will be constantly challenged to deliver new and exciting VR experiences to the more tech-savvy younger generation of attendees.”

On the other hand, investors have become more savvy and interested in betting on virtual reality startups. Japan gaming and social company GREE, for example, recently launched its $12 million fund targeting virtual reality startups, and Taiwan’s Cherubic Ventures has also launched its $120 million fund looking at Saas, virtual reality and robotics startups.

Also Read:

Japan VC Roundup: Skyland raises $10m fund; Media startup The Bridge raises money

Indonesia: HR SaaS company Rekruta raises seed round from East Ventures

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.