StretchSense finalizes US$7.6m capital raise with major investment from Par Equity
Motion-capture leader to expand global sales and support and accelerate development of new sensor technology for emerging applications
AUCKLAND, New Zealand, Nov. 7, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — StretchSense, a global leader in high-precision motion capture technology for the gaming and animation sectors has completed a US$7.6m (NZ$13.3m) Series A investment led by Scotland-based Par Equity with participation by existing StretchSense investors GD1, the NZ-based venture capital firm, and Scottish Enterprise, Scotland’s national economic development agency.
Founded in 2012 by CEO Dr. Ben O’Brien, Chief Technology Officer Dr. Todd Gisby, and bioengineering Professor Iain Anderson, StretchSense is headquartered in Auckland with offices in Seattle and Edinburgh. The company has more than 200 gaming and visual effects (VFX) studios using its technology worldwide.
The investment will further accelerate StretchSense’s global expansion. It plans to grow its world-class engineering team to meet strong customer interest in the compatibility of its technology with leading motion capture and VR tools in the market. It will also focus on developing new sensor technology to enable high-precision tracking in emerging applications such as the rapidly-developing corporate virtual training industry which is estimated to be worth more than US$300 billion in 2022 and expected to grow to more than US$550 billion by 2027.
StretchSense will expand its European headquarters in Edinburgh with the establishment of a Centre of Excellence in AI and Spatial Computing. To meet strong global demand for its technology it is expanding both sales and service teams across its three offices, with a strong focus on customer support and building its burgeoning channel and technology partnerships.
“At StretchSense we believe that technology-enabled garments are needed to humanize access to virtual worlds. We have already proven this model by revolutionizing how studios capture highly precise, detailed hand movements in the gaming and VFX industries. With this investment we are expanding into the metaverse, focused on the key partnerships, new technology, and investments in scale needed to build the future of how people will create, learn, work, and play”, says O’Brien.
Tom Croy, Senior Investment Manager, Par Equity, said: “StretchSense has developed technology that is transforming the creative industries sector including gaming and virtual effects, the company has hundreds of customers across the globe, and is well positioned to play a role in the evolution of virtual worlds. We look forward to being on the journey with Ben, Todd, and the rest of the team.”
StretchSense (Sensor Holdings Limited) is the creator of the MoCap Pro Glove and Hand Engine software. Its industry-leading hand and finger motion capture solution combines bespoke stretch sensors with machine-learning for superior finger tracking and reduced clean up in post-production. Digitizing lifelike movement and expression, StretchSense are leading the race to empower the makers of the future and become the hands of virtual worlds. Visit www.stretchsense.com for more information.
Par Equity is a leading venture capital firm, based in Edinburgh, investing in innovative technology companies with high growth potential in the North of the UK. Since it was founded in 2008, Par Equity has invested more than £130m across 71 companies, leveraging a further £215m of capital from third-party investors. Par Equity is also one of the founding members of ESG_VC, a pan-European initiative to improve the ESG credentials of early tech companies. Past successes include Current Health, DeltaDNA, Symphonic Software, ICS Learn and Dukosi, whilst its existing portfolio is made up of rising stars such as Cyacomb, Speech Graphics, Nova Pangaea Technologies, Miralis Fuuse and Cumulus Neuroscience.
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