Beginning in late 2015, media companies began to race into augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) startups.

Augmented reality and virtual reality (AR/VR) are no longer just toys. With nearly 20% of AR/VR deals going toward companies focused on content, media companies don’t want to be left out on the next content-delivery platform.

Not surprisingly, many of the top digital media giants and production studios have jumped into startup investment.

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Media players and their venture arms that have made bets on AR/VR recently include:

  • Comcast Ventures
  • Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments
  • Legendary
  • Warner Bros.
  • Time Warner Investments
  • Axel Springer
  • Bonnier Growth Media
  • A&E Television Networks
  • The Walt Disney Company

Using CB Insights data, we created a timeline in order to visualize the boom in corporate media investment into AR/VR startups.

The pioneering AR/VR deal involving a media corporate occurred in Q4’14, and was Burbank-California based Legendary Entertainment’s investment in Magic Leap‘s $542M Series B. More than 6 months passed without another until late 2015, where a wave of AR/VR deals formed, beginning with Comcast Ventures investing in Altspace VR‘s $10M Series A and Bonnier investing in VR studio Resolution Games‘ $6M Series A.

See the full timeline below:

Media In ARVR 2

 

*The timeline above excludes deals made by accelerators or incubators that may be associated with, or have received investment from, a media company. 

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