Octi, a Los Angeles, CA-based AI augmented video company, raised $7.5M in seed funding.
Backers included Shasta Ventures, I2BF Ventures, Bold Capital Partners, Day One Ventures, Human Ventures, Live Nation, AB InBev, Tom Conrad, Shiva Rajaraman, Scott Belsky, Abbe Raven, and Joshua Kushner.
The company plans to use the funds to continue building out its team of computer vision scientists, researchers, and machine learning engineers, and to pursue integrations of its proprietary augmented video technology by third-party companies and mobile applications across industries such as fitness, gaming, and fashion.
Founded by Justin Fuisz, an entrepreneur in the augmented video and computer vision industries, and Drew Martin, a serial entrepreneur with extensive experience in operating video-centric companies, Octi is an augmented video company leveraging machine learning and computer vision to make worlds more interactive. Its mobile application, OCTI, allows users to augment themselves, their friends, and their worlds by using the human body as a new medium for communication. It uses the human body as a new medium for an evolution of storytelling, just as GIFs, emojis, and face filters once revolutionized mobile communication. Octi’s proprietary skeleton mapping and gesture detection technology uses a smartphone camera to recognize the human body without additional sensors and automatically overlays contextual 3D effects, allowing users to be anyone — or anywhere — with their friends. The technology recognizes what’s happening in real time with a human body, interprets gestures, and understands spatially where a person sits in a room or scene.
The company has also entered into a strategic investment and partnership with the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) via its athlete-driven accelerator, the OneTeam Collective. The partnership will enable fans to create videos where they interact with NFL player avatars. Octi will create and commercially distribute avatars for more than 2,000 active NFL players.