ObEN, Inc., a Pasadena, CA-based developer of artificial intelligence technology to combine a person’s image and voice to create virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) experiences, closed a $7.7m Series A funding round.
The round was led by CrestValue Capital, the investment arm of the DunAn Group, with participation from Cybernaut Westlake Partners, the U.S. fund of Cybernaut Investment, and Leaguer Venture Investment Co., Ltd., the venture fund of the Research Institute of Tsinghua University in Shenzhen, Third Wave Digital, the venture fund of Allen DeBevoise, founder of Machinima, Inc., Dream Maker Entertainment Ltd., a subsidiary of S.M. Entertainment Co., Ltd. (KOSDAQ: 041510), Gordon Cheng, chief executive officer, Cameron Pace Group China; and technology incubator Idealab.
The company will use the funds to continue product development, grow its team of scientists, and identify new partnerships.
Founded in 2014 by Nikhil Jain, chief executive officer, ObEN provides proprietary AI technology that combines a person’s voice and image to create a 3D virtual self and produce VR and AR experiences via immersive and social interactions including adventure travel, musical concerts and classrooms in space.
Its virtual self product is expected to launch in Q1 2017.
ObEN is an HTC VIVE X portfolio company, the accelerator program of HTC Corporation (HTC) (TWSE: 2498), and is located in Pasadena at technology incubator Idealab.