Prague-based LIV raises €900k to bridge the divide between VR content creators and spectators

Liv-founder

Based in Prague, LIV believes that the spectator experience for entertainment, gaming, and sports can be infinitely enhanced through VR. Using mixed reality, LIV’s technology allows audiences to interact with VR gameplay in real-time.

Founded in 2016, LIV has just received an investment of €900k. The startup is backed by Seedcamp, TechStars, and Credo Ventures, along with angel investors including Palmer Luckey, the founder of Oculus and designer of Oculus Rift, and Jaroslav Beck, the CEO and co-founder of VR gaming studio Beat Games.

With the funding, LIV will continue to build its integrated VR live streaming and real-time audience interaction platform for streamers and games developers, empowering creators to grow and engage their audiences wherever the VR experience takes them.

“We think that VR is the final computing platform, and in a world where VR is mainstay we need tools for creators and developers to share their experiences in real-time,” said LIV’s CEO and founder AJ Shewki. “In VR, your whole body is your controller, and we had to include that human nuance into the spectator experience. We’ve taken VR from a ‘must try to believe’ experience, to something you can watch on a 2D screen whilst still really understanding the magic of six degrees of freedom that VR offers.

“We have some pioneers within our field on the team and are now backed by the people and companies that created VR as we know it. Together we are playing a pivotal role in shaping the future of the industry. Our kit is being pushed further and further afield, and all our partners, creators, and audience are as excited as us to see what comes next.”

The LIV App has so far been downloaded over 34,000 times and is responsible for the viewing experience of Beat Games’ viral sensation Beat Saber in 2018, which received over 1.5 billion views globally, leading the way for how VR should be viewed on 2D screens.

“LIV has been instrumental in the growth of Beat Games’ global brand awareness. The Beat Saber video shot us from an anticipated VR game to a global sensation,” said Beat Games CEO Jaroslav Beck. “A large part of that is thanks to LIV. As an early investor, we have seen the potential for making VR game streaming a household activity and from what we can see, the team is only just getting warmed up. From a developers perspective, their SDK is super easy to integrate and their creator community is the largest in the world – both important factors in our decision to work with them.”

Oculus has also already used LIV’s technology to power all the mixed reality footage in their Oculus Quest release trailers.

“I created the Oculus Rift because I wanted the ability to transport myself into virtual worlds,” said Palmer Luckey, Oculus Rift’s creator and founder. “AJ and his team have taken the next step towards that goal, empowering creators and developers to present themselves and their avatars however they want during live gaming and broadcast.  I love what they have already done, and I am an investor because I am so excited about what they will do next.”