Torch 3D has raised $3.5 million to build its augmented and virtual reality prototyping platform. The idea, which came from a couple of Magic Leap alumni, is to make it fast and easy for teams to build, share, and iterate on 3D concepts.
Portland, Oregon-based Torch 3D wants to make it possible for any designer to develop and design in 3D for immersive VR environments almost instantly, with no prior knowledge of game or software development. And it wants to enable those teams to iterate on prototypes across teams, on any platform or device, in real time.
The VR Fund and Silicon Valley Data Capital led the investment round. Additional investors include Seven Peaks Ventures, GVR Fund, Presence Capital, Antipodean Ventures, Jerome Capital, and TWB Investment Partnership.
The company was founded by CEO Paul Reynolds and Josh Faust, who previously led Magic Leap’s software development kit and applications efforts. They were joined by veteran cloud and infrastructure entrepreneur Antony Falco. Torch 3D currently has five employees.
The financing will be used to complete Torch 3D’s beta offering for public release and to expand its team.
“We worked in games for years, and we saw people who had difficulty moving from 2D creation to 3D,” said Reynolds, in an interview with VentureBeat. “We saw an opportunity to help people work in a 3D format, which is a little more complicated. We feel like we are filling a void. Speed is one of the biggest benefits.”
Torch 3D is now accepting inquiries for its early access beta program, and the company expects to open access to the platform to the public in early 2018. Reynolds said the tech looks like it will have traction in retail, where store designers need to know what something looks like before they move items around in a physical location.
“The applications for virtual and augmented reality are numerous and extend far beyond consumer entertainment to address real business challenges in the enterprise,” said Marco DeMiroz, general partner of The VR Fund, in a statement. “Immersive technologies have the ability to transform nearly every category, and Torch 3D is well-positioned to drive broad adoption of VR and AR across new industries.”