Ready Player Me raises $56 mn in Series B led by a16z to expand its audience in the metaverse
Ready Player Me handles over 3,000 partners integrating around 5 million avatars across the web
By Shashank Bhardwaj
Ready Player Me has received $56 million in Series B funding. It is a cross-game avatar platform based in Estonia. It enables users to explore virtual worlds while maintaining a consistent identity. Andreessen Horowitz of a16z led the Series B funding round. Several market leaders contributed to the funding round.
The official press release read, "Today, we're excited to announce a $56M Series B funding round led by a16z GAMES FUND ONE and a16z crypto."
The press release further revealed that the fund was made possible with participation from Plural, David Baszucki, co-founder of Roblox, Justin Kan, co-founder of Twitch and Fractal, Robin Chan, co-founder of Fractal, Henry Ault, co-founder of Eco, Sebastian Knutsson & Riccardo Zacconi, King Games co-founders, Collab Currency, Endeavor, Kevin Hart’s Hartbeat Ventures, D’Amelio family, Punk6529, Snowfro, Nordic Ninja, Konvoy and more.
The new funds will be used to expand the team from 51 members to 100. The funds will also be used to expand the company's team and shift its focus from developer-centric tools to user-centric ones. It will enable users to create and sell avatar-related items such as outfits. Avatars created with the company's system are compatible with any supported metaverse experience. This will allow people to carry their appearance between virtual worlds.
According to Timmu Tõke, co-founder and CEO of Ready Player Me, "Our bigger vision is to connect the metaverse through avatars…There may be metaverse [experiences] owned by big companies, who will make all the rules, but there is a vision of an open one where people can travel, built by millions of developers, where no one controls the whole thing. Like the internet. We’re trying to push the world towards that metaverse."
Ready Player Me, which was founded in 2014, aims to connect the various platforms on the metaverse through avatars. It currently has over 3,000 partners who have integrated approximately five million Ready Play Me avatars into their Web2 and Web3 applications. VRChat, Spatial, Somnium Space, RTFKT, and many more are among these partners. It currently provides access to its avatar creator tool to developers. This tool can save developers anywhere from six months to several years of time. It also allows players to have some visual consistency between games.
In the words of Tõke, "We believe in the future of an open and connected metaverse that is built by many developers and creators and is not controlled by one company…Ready Player Me exists to break down walls to build a more connected virtual world. We are the avatar interoperability layer for the metaverse."
The writer is the founder at yMedia. He ventured into crypto in 2013 and is an ETH maximalist. Twitter: @bhardwajshash
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