SEATTLE–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Omnivor, a pioneer of 3D holographic content, today announced it has closed a $2.75 million Series Seed funding round led by Sway Ventures. Existing investors include Kernel Labs, a start-up studio based in Seattle, and other notable strategic angel investors. This financing brings Omnivor’s total funding to approximately $5.5 million and will support expanding its platform technology and hiring additional engineering talent.
The pandemic continues to challenge basic assumptions around work and consumption in the global economy. Consumers have shifted their buying behaviors, shopping online in more significant numbers and frequency. According to data from IBM’s U.S. Retail Index, the pandemic has accelerated the shift away from physical stores to digital shopping by roughly five years. Retailers are quickly pivoting to omnichannel capabilities to remain competitive in the new environment. Employers are focused on collaboration tools in a world where companies are still trying to replicate the in-office experience within a distributed and remote work environment. Even educators are building towards a virtual-first or hybrid model, pulling the future into current reality. “Physicality is being questioned at every interaction, from working and shopping, to learning and communicating,” said Najib Khouri-Haddad, General Partner at Sway Ventures. “Omnivor has the potential to become a powerful platform in this new reality.”
Omnivor’s funding announcement follows the launch of its two flagship products, Live Holographic Telepresence and Holograms for Retail. The company’s products provide a technology-driven, lifelike experience, enabling users to access, control and personalize holographic content on any device. “Many things we do online, like collaboration and shopping, are better in-person because customers control their experience. 3D Holographic video gives customers a media experience that’s much closer to reality, leading to increased engagement, improving communication, and helping users make better decisions,” said Adam Kirk, CEO of Omnivor.
“Live Holographic Telepresence” is a new form of communication product, offering participants a collaborative and interactive meeting experience. With the availability of nationwide 5G, Live Holographic Telepresence will offer a wide range of corporate training and communication options for organizations of all sizes. Omnivor, a recent graduate of the 5G Open Innovation Lab co-founded by T-Mobile, is collaborating with the Un-carrier to develop Live Holographic Telepresence running on the T-Mobile 5G network. The collaboration aims to develop the next frontier of video communications with Omnivor’s state-of-the-art live 3D Telepresence technology and 5G’s faster data speeds, lower latency, and edge computing.
“We see great potential for T-Mobile 5G to take holograms into everyday life with real-time hologram video calls right on your mobile device, anytime, anywhere. With hologram calls, we will have a more natural, intuitive way to communicate with 3D images that enable us to better experience physical presence,” said John Saw, Executive Vice President of Advanced and Emerging Technologies at T-Mobile. “Omnivor is an early leader in this space, and we are excited to collaborate on this next frontier in video communications.”
The “Holograms for Retail” product is poised to overhaul virtual commerce by enhancing the interactive buying experience. Nike is tapping into Omnivor’s Holograms for Retail product, providing at-home shoppers the opportunity to understand better how products fit. Powered by Omnivor, the Nike Virtual View feature at Finish Line and JD Sport allows shoppers to select a hologram that matches their size and body type, effectively building a virtual dressing room in shoppers’ living rooms. Not only is Nike able to offer its shoppers a unique omnichannel shopping experience, but these customers purchase more products, return fewer items, and almost half of shoppers returned to the feature more than once.
Omnivor provides a turnkey solution for building, hosting, and streaming volumetric video assets for retail, advertising, entertainment, training, and other personalized content. With Omnivor, users can access and uniquely control holographic content on any device, ranging from virtual reality headsets to smartphones. Founded in 2016, Omnivor is a spinout of Kernel Labs, a Seattle-based startup studio. To date, Omnivor has raised $5.5 million in funding from angel investors and institutional firms.
About Sway Ventures
Sway Ventures is a San Francisco-based venture capital firm investing in early to mid-stage technology companies. The firm invests in high performing teams, building revolutionary technology, creating the next enterprise or consumer category. With a focus on strategic capitalization, business development support, and engineered exits, Sway Ventures provides entrepreneurs with the support they need to change the future. www.swayvc.com
Adam Kirk, [email protected]