Virtual reality is one of the hottest topics in all of sports technology these days. One of the leading companies in this burgeoning field is NextVR, which is currently looking to raise another investment round to continue their growth as a virtual reality sports content broadcaster. Their current plan is to raise $80 million for a Series B round, and they have secured an investment from Chinese Investment group CITIC Guoan for $20 million. The deal will give CITIC Guoan direct connections to the leading technology and personnel in the VR sector as well as 2.3% of NextVR’s total equity. This now seals NextVR’s valuation at $800 million, according to Variety.
CITIC Guaon obtained Class B shares that represent 2.3% of NextVR’s total equity.
Headquartered in Laguna Beach, Calif., NextVR has been taking strides in delivering live and on-demand virtual reality experiences in a number of areas around the sporting world. One of their most recent moves was a partnership with Golden Boy Promotions to give fans the chance to have a virtual reality experience of WBC, Ring Magazine, and Lineal Middleweight World Champion Canelo Álvarez’s training sessions.
In addition, they were able to provide virtual reality broadcasting at the U.S. Open, which was part of their five-year partnership with FOX Sports. The broadcast included views of the tee boxes and greens at Holes 9, 17 and 18, roving coverage between Holes 10 and 12 and a look behind-the-scenes at Oakmont Country Club.
So how exactly do you use NextVR?
Once you have a Samsung Gear VR headset, you first need to download and open the NextVR app onto your Samsung smartphone. You then insert your phone into the Gear VR headset and the app will have options of what to view. (It is also suggested to be connecting to Wi-Fi to get the best quality.)
With the Gear VR only costing $99, it makes it one of the most affordable ways to experience sports in virtual reality.