BSkyB Increases ‎Stake in Silicon Valley Virtual Reality Technology Firm Jaunt

Courtesy of BSkyB
BSkyB's Stuart Murphy sits on Jaunt's board.

The U.K. pay TV giant says the investments for the startup, whose board of advisers includes Jared Leto, will give it "additional insight into developments within the field."

LONDON — BSkyB has increased its investment in Jaunt, a Silicon Valley startup whose technology adds virtual reality components to TV programming.

The U.K. pay TV giant said Monday it has invested an additional $400,000 in the Palo Alto-based company after a December deal to pump $350,000 into it.

"‎These investments provide [BSkyB] with additional insight into developments within the field," the company said.

Jaunt was launched in early 2013 to offer an "immersive virtual reality experience" for TV programming.

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Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox owns a 39 percent stake in BSkyB. Other key investors and advisers include venture capital firm Redpoint Ventures, Dolby chairman Peter Gotcher and Sling Media co-founder Blake Krikorian.

BSkyB director of entertainment channels Stuart Murphy sits on the Jaunt board along with Tim Haley, a Netflix board member appointed by Redpoint, and Gotcher.

The firm's board of advisers includes Jared Leto, Google Glass creator Babak Parviz, Imax chairman Brad Wechsler, director Mark Romanek (One Hour Photo) and Krikorian.

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BSkyB has also invested in such tech companies as video streaming firm Roku‎ and second-screen app maker Zeebox.

"Our world-class team is creating next-generation technology for the most immersive entertainment experience ever," Jaunt says on its website.

CEO Jens Christensen‎ launched ‎real-time web intelligence firm Ellerdale, which he later sold to Flipboard.  

Twitter: @georgszalai


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