HTC announces Vive X global VR accelerator program

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HTC has announced the establishment of Vive X, a global accelerator program aimed at startups working on virtual reality (VR) solutions.

"Virtual reality is changing the world, yet to do that effectively it needs a healthy eco-system to expand into the mass market. Through HTC Vive, we look forward to enabling global talent to create interesting and compelling content and to help shape the future of this industry," Cher Wang, Chairwoman and CEO of HTC said in a statement released on Tuesday.

The company has dedicated a $100 million fund to the ‘Vive X’ accelerator program, the biggest dedicated VR investment fund to date. The program is designed to “help cultivate, foster and grow the global VR ecosystem by supporting start-ups and providing them with expertise, special access to advanced VR technology, financial investment, mentorship and unmatched go-to-market support - ultimately building them into valuable content producers or content enablers for the Vive platform.”

With this initiative HTC is laying the groundwork for its future success. Most investment to date has gone into hardware development, but VR needs high quality and a variety of content to become mainstream. By supporting VR startups, HTC is making sure that it will be able to provide content to go with its Vive headset. No specifics are provided about the nature of content, which might indicate that it won’t be solely focused on gaming.

Initially operating from Beijing, Taipei and San Francisco, with a view to expanding to other global hubs in the near future, Vive X offers startups access to funding, leading VR know-how, hands-on coaching, and office space. Startups will be invited to demo days where they will interact with leading investors.

Applications for all three locations are being accepted. The Beijing location will be in operation first, starting in May when selected start-ups from around Asia will be invited to apply for the program, with the goal of enabling those companies to grow with the Vive platform.

“Vive X in Beijing is targeted at accelerating entrance and growth for companies with proven success in the VR industry, with each participating startup receiving cash investment in return for a small amount of equity. The program is open to companies from any industry that are creating content, tools, applications and accessories that enrich the VR ecosystem and end-user experience,” states the press release.

Visit www.htcvive.com/us/vivex/ to learn more about Vive X and www.HTCVive.com to learn more about the HTC Vive.