China Media Capital Takes Stake in NextVR

Oculus-Rift-2-H 2016
Courtesy of Oculus

The investment adds to the Chinese company's growing international VR portfolio.

China Media Capital, the Shanghai-based investment group lead by Chinese media mogul Ruigang Li, has taken a stake in Los Angeles-based virtual reality startup NextVR.

Known for developing platforms for on-demand broadcasting of live events to VR headgear, NextVR is in the process of raising an $80 million B financing round based on an $800 million valuation. Financial details of CMC's investment were not disclosed. 

The NextVR investment adds to CMC's growing virtual reality portfolio. In May, the group partnered with Palo Alto-based Jaunt Inc. to create a Beijing-based virtual reality joint venture. CMC had invested in Jaunt last September, joining The Walt Disney Company and Evolution Media in a $65 million funding round. Two of CMC's subsidiaries, Ti’ao Dongli and Whaley Technology, also are deeply engaged in the VR space. Whaley is developing VR hardware, while Ti'ao, also known as China Sports Media, is developing streaming VR streaming services for sports content.

CMC is the second state-affiliated Chinese investor to take a stake in NextVR. CITIC Guoan Group made a $20 million investment in the company's series B round last month.

NextVR has a content deal with events company Live Nation to broadcast “hundreds” of live musical performances in VR. Earlier this year it also entered into a five-year partnership with Fox Sports to offer live VR coverage of sporting events.

CMC is the local investment partner to many Hollywood brands in China. Its investment portfolio includes stakes in Imax China, Oriental DreamWorks and Warner Bros.' Chinese film studio, Flagship Entertainment.