In a move that amplifies its R&D strategy around virtual reality, Nickelodeon has joined a number of major Hollywood studios—including Warner Bros. and 21st Century Fox—in a US$30-million Series B financing round closed by location-based VR startup Dreamscape Immersive.
Along with its undisclosed financial commitment, Nickelodeon will work with the L.A.-headquartered company to produce a VR experience that integrates the kidsnet’s popular kids and family properties. Details of the experience and which brands will be featured are yet to be announced.
Dreamscape decided to launch a new investment push after its AMC Entertainment-led Series A round, which will see AMC open and operate up to six Dreamscape Immersive VR centers within AMC theaters and at standalone locations in North America and the UK, generated a significant amount of interest from additional parties.
Warner Bros., 21st Century Fox and Bold Capital Partners are among Dreamscape’s Series A investors returning with more support. Lifestyle conglomerate Majid Al Futtaim, hardware developer VRSense Solutions and media company Image Nation Abu Dhabi join Nick with Series B financial commitments.
Dreamscape will use the funding from each investor to scale its operations, grow a marquee slate of content and expand internationally. The startup’s flagship VR center is expected to open to the public at Westfield Century City Mall in L.A. in 2018.
Dreamscape Immersive was founded in January 2017 and is led by CEO and former Disney Imagineering chief Bruce Vaughn, along with COO Aaron Grosky and co-chairmen Walter Parkes and Kevin Wall. The company provides untethered VR experiences using body-mapping technology that allows participants to enter into, explore and interact within cinematic worlds.
Nick’s investment in the company comes amid its production of Inside Voice, a live-action TV movie featuring virtual reality sequences developed and created by the kidsnet’s newly launched Entertainment Lab.