Jan 30, 2020

Enterprise VR startup Spatial nabs new funding

Photo: Courtesy of Spatial

Spatial, a company that creates team workspaces in virtual and augmented reality, has landed $14 million in new funding, bringing its total raised to $22 million.

Why it matters: Spatial has some impressive technology, but will likely need to play a long game, as VR adoption has proven slower than once hoped.

  • The company is working with a handful of early customers, including Mattel, Purina and BNP Paribas.
  • Investors include iNovia, Lerer Hippeau, Expa, Whitestar Capital, Kakao Ventures, Baidu Ventures and Instagram co-founder Mike Krieger. 

My thought bubble: The most interesting thing about Spatial is the way it works across phones and different VR headsets, including Oculus, Microsoft Hololens and Qualcomm's new XR2 reference design. I had the chance to try it out last year at Snapdragon Summit, and the cross-platform capabilities are impressive.

Go deeper: The complicated future of augmented and virtual reality

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AI energy startup Worlds snags Chevron and Petronas as backers

Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

An AI company with energy applications is emerging from stealth mode with $10 million from backers including VC arms of Chevron and the Malaysian oil giant Petronas.

Driving the news: Worlds, a spatial AI company being spun out of the firm Hypergiant Sensory Sciences, announced the Series A funding led by Align Capital.

WeWork sells minority stake in The Wing

Photo: Alex Tai/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

WeWork said that it has sold its minority stake in women co-working space operator The Wing to a group of new and existing investors, including Google Ventures. No terms were disclosed.

Why it matters: This is a reminder that WeWork isn't just a cautionary tale to be shoehorned into every scattered critique of the venture capital and startup ecosystem. It's still a commercial real estate giant that's trying to right the ship by refocusing on its core, slower-growth business.

Go deeperArrowJan 22, 2020

Online dollar store Hollar to wind down

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Hollar, an e-commerce company that raised more than $75 million in VC funding, is expected to wind down soon, Axios has learned from multiple sources.

Between the lines: It's been a very tough month for direct-to-consumer startups, beginning with Casper Sleep's uninspired IPO and Monday's shutdown of SoftBank-backed Brandless.