Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality Investment Hits $1.7 Billion In Last 12 Months

Includes: BLIP, MLEAP
by: Tim Merel

Digi-Capital's latest quarterly Augmented/Virtual Reality Report and Deals Database analyzed $1.7 billion of AR/VR VC investments in the 12 months to Q1 2016.

Almost $1.2 billion was invested in the first quarter of this year alone, with around $800 million going into Magic Leap (MLEAP). To put this in perspective, $1.2 billion dollars is 25x the level of AR/VR investment two years ago in Q2 2014.

Even without Magic Leap's monster round, the remaining Q1 2016 investment was 45% higher than the previous quarter. The leading AR/VR investment sectors in the last year were AR/VR hardware, video, solutions/services, games, advertising/marketing, consumer apps, distribution, tech and peripherals.

Despite the early stage of the market, there are already 4 AR/VR unicorns including Magic Leap ($4.5 billion), Oculus ($2 billion), Blippar ($1.5 billion) and Mindmaze ($1 billion). VCs and corporates in both the US and China have developed a laser like focus on AR/VR, with investment now coming from both dedicated AR/VR funds and the cream of Sand Hill Road investors. Increased investor competition also means that AR/VR rounds are increasing in both size and valuation. Despite what is happening in the broader tech investment market, AR/VR investment just got real.