Not just about gaming, Razer lands USD 75M from Chinese VR investor to develop OSVR

From Baidu Images
From Baidu Images

Chinese IT company Hangzhou Liaison Interactive invested USD 75 million in San Diego-based Razer to further develop its Open-Source Virtual Reality (OSVR) platform.

Founded in 1998, Razer is known as the world’s leading brand in high-end precision gaming products. The company is also the founder of the world’s largest virtual reality platform, Open-Source Virtual Reality (OSVR).

OSVR is an “ecosystem” designed to set an open standard for virtual reality input devices, games and output with the sole goal of providing the best possible game experience in the virtual reality space. OSVR has more than 300 partners globally, including Intel, NVIDIA, Unity 3D, Ubisoft, Gearbox, 360 as well as academic institutions.

“Razer‘s advantages in hardware will make us stronger in the VR industry, and eventually help us to establish an industry chain using Liaison Interactive VR OS as the center to connect hardware, content and services,” He Zhitao, Chairman of Liaison Interactive said on Wednesday.

“China’s demand for virtual reality is growing very rapidly. OSVR’s goal is to help accelerate the development of VR in China by helping developers to support an ever-growing variety of VR hardware on a local and global scale and collaborate with the best in the industry,” said Min-Liang Tan, CEO of Razer.

Liaison Interactive invested in several smart devices and VR companies before investing in Razer, such as USD 15 million in US VR leader Avegant in 2015, who launched the first virtual reality retinal glasses, Glyph.

Virtual reality is hot for smart device manufacturers and investors in China. According to Goldman Sachs, VR has become another hit after the smartphone. There are several major Chinese players in the VR sector. Tencent revealed a VR project, and released the development kit for Tencent VR last December. Chinese online video giant LeEco, previously known as LeTV, announced its entry into the VR sector last December, and Xiaomi launched the Xiaomi Exploration Lab to develop VR technology in January.

Besides these tech giants, several VR startup companies are worth watching. Chinese VR startup ANTVR received USD 46 million in Series B financing last December; DeePoon raised USD 30 million in Series B funding from two Xiaomi-backed companies; and 3Glasses is working with offline 3D theaters and experience stores to promote its products, and has over 1,000 experience stores in China.

(Top photo from Baidu Images)

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