Rec room, a development studio in Seattle, provided $145 million in new capital for the fast-growing VR application rec room, making its current valuation reach $3.5 billion.
This is the second round of financing of rec room in 2021. Following the salary increase of $100 million in March, the company officially introduced the company into the status of “unicorn” and became a private start-up company with a value of more than $1 billion. The management of coat led the latest round of investment, with the participation of existing investors Sequoia Capital, Index Ventures and madrona venture group.
The flagship application of the same name of rec room can be provided in 2D and VR formats on multiple platforms, including PC, oculus, mobile devices, Xbox and Playstation 5 on December 16. Rec room is a free application called “universally accessible online community”, in which users can create cartoon avatars and participate in various activities, many of which are designed by the application’s community.
Rec room has been available since steam first launched it in 2016, but its community has grown significantly during 2020. During the covid-19 isolation period, users are transferred to the classroom to personally simulate activities, including school courses, birthday parties, happy hours and one-on-one treatment. By September 2020, the number of users of rec room has tripled.
Rec room is one of a group of community-based social gaming and entertainment applications that rely on user generated content and have grown dramatically during the influenza pandemic. The group includes minecraft and roblox, which were worth $44 billion after listing earlier this year.
Cameron brown, chief creative officer of rec room, said: “I think the essence of social applications is to produce compound effects.”. “The more people play, the more people can play. This means that with the expansion of the size of the entertainment room, the entertainment room becomes more attractive, so I think we have such an opportunity.”
The momentum of rec room continues this year. It debuted on Android devices in September and launched a seven player racing game called rec rally, which can be played in the app. The number of employees in the studio increased from less than 45 to nearly 200. It is reported that as of November, the number of monthly users of rec room increased by 450% year-on-year. Its total number of players now exceeds 37 million.
According to the internal data of rec room, the largest active user group of rec room comes from the mobile platform. It has also set an “all-time high” on the console and virtual reality devices, and is currently the largest virtual reality application.
Now, at the end of 2021, the way out of a larger takeout room is its way, the meta curve in front of the way out; All the exciting things promised by meta or Microsoft for metaverse are what has happened in the rec room.
Brown said the start-up focused on “people-oriented metaverse”
“When I was asked about our vision for metaverse,” Brown said, “my answer is based on people and what they want and need to do every day. Of course, this technology is very attractive, but in the final analysis, talents in the virtual world are the people who really make it successful, which is the most interesting and meaningful aspect.”
Rec room’s future continuous expansion plan includes further investment in its founder community. Most of the rec room is made by users, including new equipment, activities and decoration of users’ private game area.
Some of them have made what Brown called “real money” from their in-game creation, because other users are willing to pay for their privileges, and rec room hopes to expand this to a certain extent. In theory, someone can make a living by virtual technology in rec room.
The startup is led by co-founder and CEO Nick fajt, who worked as a producer and project manager for hololens at Microsoft.