Mall & theme park VR experience startup gears up for £5m IPO

A virtual reality (VR) experience company that supplies virtual experiences to theme parks and shopping malls is ready to go public on the AIM market, with aims to raise £5m from the listing.

The UK-headquartered Immotion uses a combination of graphics, motion and sound to create immersive experiences for consumers at venues including Legoland Boston and multiple shopping centres across the UK.

Raising the cash would see Immotion valued at roughly £20m, which would be used to fund its further expansion in Europe and the US, as it predicts interest in the VR experience market to grow to $8bn (£6bn) by 2022.

Immotion has hit the market at rapid pace in just the last year, a result of mergers with Manchester-based CGI specialist Studio Liddell, and C2K, a filmmaker based in Los Angeles, and now boasts over 100 staff across its Manchester, LA, Dubai and Tokyo offices.

Also within that time, two seed rounds have brought the company’s total funding to $1.8m (£1.4m), with investors taking confidence in management by co-founders Martin Higginson (CEO) and David Marks (group finance director), both technology and media entrepreneurs with experience in selling and listing firms including Netplay TV and Monstermob.

For buyers, Immotion offers a full ready-to-play package, including a range of hardware products for single and multiplayer games such as motion activated chairs and in-house created content, as well as access to a web-based interface for ‘one-click’ game installations, credit purchases and games licensing.

Customers can also access analytics tools to discover what’s working best for their clientele, or to change pricing or promotional information in real-time to combat quiet periods of trading.

The first rollout of Immotion’s Experience Platform came December last year in Bristol’s Cabot Circus shopping centre, which continues to enjoy a 100% ‘Excellent’ TripAdvisor rating.

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