Leeds-based independent games studio and virtual reality (VR) developer XR Games, has unlocked £5.9 million in funding. The round was led by existing investors act media ventures (formerly known as ACT Capital Partners), Praetura Ventures (that invested in Futr) and Maven.
Prior to this, XR Games raised £1 million in a round led by act media ventures, £1.5 million led by Praetura Ventures alongside act media ventures and an additional £1.5 million in 2021 as part of an investment round led by Maven.
New studio in Leeds
This investment will support XR Games’ expansion as it moves to a brand-new studio in the centre of Leeds later this year. It will enable the business to grow its team as it invests in intellectual property (IP), the development of new games, and research into VR and augmented reality (AR) technologies, following the success of its Zombieland: Headshot Fever launch in 2021.
Bobby Thandi, XR Games Founder and CEO, said: “This latest investment will enable XR Games to continue to bring new innovations to the AR/VR sector over the next few years. Our new Leeds studio will allow us to continue to grow our team, and the number of projects we’re working on. And with the hundreds of applications we are receiving for each job vacancy, it’s clear there’s a growing appetite for this space.”
Mark Lyons, director of investments at Praetura Ventures, said: “At Praetura Ventures, we pride ourselves on backing exceptional founders by providing our ‘more than money’ support to help them grow the best business they can. XR Games is a stellar example of a northern business turning heads on a global stage. Since our first investment in 2019, it’s so rewarding to see the team’s continuous expansion in terms of both staff and development on their projects.”
Adam Schoff, CEO and founder of act media ventures, commented: “As a very early investor in XR Games, we have been witness to the amazing growth of the company. We are excited to participate in this latest investment round and look forward to the exciting journey ahead.”
Gavin Bell, investment director at Maven, said: “The team at XR Games has performed exceptionally since our original investment last year. It’s great to see them expand their headquarters in the North and to continue to add talented people to the team. We’re very excited for what the future holds for XR Games.”
Specialises in AR and VR content
XR Games was founded by Bobby Thandi in 2017 in Leeds. The game development studio specialises in immersive AR and VR content. XR Games works with major partners and internationally-renowned brands, including Sony Pictures VR and Rovio Entertainment, to create games for the rapidly-growing VR and AR market.
Last year, the global industry witnessed $21.8 billion in sales and it is estimated to reach $84 billion in 2028. As a result of this growth, XR Games has tripled its headcount to employ more than 85 people in 2021 and continues to grow. It acquired specialist VR game studio Fierce Kaiju to expand its games portfolio and scale its teams. The expansion has allowed the company to take on larger projects, and grow its revenues 10x last year.
XR Games has created fantastic games for some biggest and most iconic titles, including Sony Pictures, Rovio, Lego, BBC, Dreamworks and more.