Virtual reality has drawn a huge amount of investment in the past few years, generating about $13 billion in value, according to a new analysis by VB Profiles.
VB Profiles found 234 companies in sectors including applications and content, VR content studio tools and platforms, reality capture tools, VR content distribution platforms, head-mounted displays, and user input hardware. VB Profiles will be showing off the VR landscape report at our GamesBeat 2015 event in San Francisco today. (VB Profiles is a partnership between Spoke Intelligence and VentureBeat.)
Those companies employ 40,000 people and have raised $3.8 billion to date, with a value creation of $13 billion. Three billion-dollar companies are on the list as well, including Oculus VR, which Facebook acquired for $2 billion.
More than a third of the companies — 82 of them — are in California. New York has 18, Washington has 10, Canada has 11, and the United Kingdom has 11. The rest are scattered around the rest of the world.
Nine companies have gone public; six have been acquired; 35 are part of other companies; and 185 are private.
VR’s explosion was evident in the past five years, when 134 companies emerged. From 2005 to 2009, 18 companies started up.
So far in 2015, 41 companies have raised $309 million. In 2014, 27 companies raised $1.4 billion. The biggest funding to date was Magic Leap, an augmented-reality (a cousin of VR technology) company, which raised $592 million to date from companies, such as Google.
The top investors include Intel Capital and Google Ventures, which have funded seven companies each. Andreessen Horowitz, Formation 8, and Qualcomm Ventures have invested in three companies each.