Canadian cinematic virtual reality (VR) producer Félix & Paul Studios has secured about $8.7 million (US$6.8 million) in a Series A financing. Comcast Ventures, an affiliate of U.S. media business Comcast Corp, led the round. It was joined by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, LDV Partners and Phi Group. With the deal, Comcast Ventures’ Michael Yang will join the company’s board. Founded in 2013, Montréal-based Félix & Paul has developed a platform for live-action VR filming and post-production. It will use the funds raised to grow its team and production capacity, enhance its VR cameras and software suite, and expand its presence in global markets.
Virtual Reality Trailblazer Felix & Paul Studios Closes $6.8 Million Series A Financing Round Led by Comcast Ventures
Emmy® Award-Winning Studio to Use Funding to Expand Team and Production Capacity, Enhance Proprietary VR Cameras & Post-Production Software Suite, and Distribute Slate of Cinematic Virtual Reality Experiences Across Major VR Platforms around the Globe
MONTREAL, June 15, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ – Felix & Paul Studios, the Emmy® Award-winning studio behind the world’s leading cinematic virtual reality experiences, today announced that it has closed a $6.8 million (USD) round of Series A funding. Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec is investing in this round led by Comcast Ventures, alongside LDV Partners and existing investor Phi Group.
“At Felix & Paul Studios, our mission is to create extremely high quality VR experiences that strike an emotional chord in viewers,” said Stéphane Rituit, co-founder, president and executive producer at Felix & Paul Studios. “This round of funding, led by the venture arm of one of the largest media and entertainment companies in the world, not only speaks to the power of our model but also points to a massive need for high quality VR content across the media landscape. We are excited to use this new capital to accelerate our goal of building a global VR studio– known for producing the highest caliber of immersive and engaging VR experiences for everyone to enjoy.”
The studio will use the investment to grow its team and production capacity for its content pipeline; enhance its proprietary VR cameras; and expand its state of the art, production and post-production software suite. Additionally, the studio will expand distribution of its virtual reality experiences and apps to more platforms and international markets.
“Felix & Paul Studios is the trailblazer in cinematic virtual reality as they have produced the best VR content for the Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR for 3 years now,” said Michael Yang, Managing Director at Comcast Ventures. “Their stories have touched audiences all over the world and their pieces are award winning. We were attracted to their artistic vision, their track record with viewers, and their full technology stack.”
“Our investment in Felix & Paul Studios is aligned with our strategy to support innovative Québec businesses and to facilitate their growth and success in international markets,” explained Christian Dubé, Executive Vice-President, Québec of la Caisse. “This transaction will solidify Felix & Paul Studios’ position as a leader in the virtual reality industry, a sector bound to grow significantly in years to come.”
Over the past year, Felix & Paul Studios has experienced tremendous growth and currently numbers 37 highly talented VR specialists across offices in Montreal and Los Angeles. Last year, the studio produced seven extremely high quality VR experiences for the Oculus platform across Rift and Gear VR. This year the company already has over 30 projects in the pipeline in various stages of development.
“Felix & Paul are incredibly talented filmmakers that have been pioneering VR since the earliest Oculus dev kits,” said Jason Rubin, Head of Content at Oculus. “They’ve continued to push the boundaries of cinematic VR and are instrumental in the growth of the medium. I can’t wait to see what they’ll do next!”
In conjunction with the round of funding, Michael Yang, Managing Director of Comcast Ventures, will join the Felix & Paul Studios board of directors.
About Felix & Paul Studios
Felix & Paul Studios is dedicated to storytelling through the medium of cinematic virtual reality. The studio combines technological innovation with a unique, pioneering and in-depth approach to the new art of virtual reality storytelling – creating high-end original cinematic experiences (“Nomads” and “Strangers”) and collaborating with existing franchises (“Jurassic World”, Cirque du Soleil and “Wild”) and world-renown personalities (President Bill Clinton, LeBron James). Led by Emmy Award-winning directors and visionaries Félix Lajeunesse and Paul Raphaël, Felix & Paul Studios invites audiences into intimate, visceral and emotive cinematic virtual reality experiences, immersing the viewer in presence-driven storylines. The company has developed a full-stack VR technology platform – including proprietary VR camera systems and accompanying post-production software and process – which sets the industry standard for the highest-quality VR filmmaking.
For more information, visit felixandpaul.com.
About Comcast Ventures
Comcast Ventures, the venture capital affiliate of Comcast Corporation, invests in innovative businesses that represent the next generation of entertainment, communications and digital technology by partnering with entrepreneurs who have the vision, passion and tenacity to succeed. Most investments are in the advertising, consumer, enterprise and infrastructure sectors. Comcast Ventures provides its portfolio companies with countless resources, relationships and know-how to help them perform at the highest possible levels.
About Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec
Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) is a long-term institutional investor that manages funds primarily for public and parapublic pension and insurance plans. As at December 31, 2015, it held CAD 248.0 billion in net assets. As one of Canada’s leading institutional fund managers, CDPQ invests globally in major financial markets, private equity, infrastructure and real estate. For more information, visit cdpq.com, follow us on Twitter @LaCDPQ or consult our Facebook or LinkedIn pages.
About LDV Partners
LDV Partners is a global team of experienced company builders, industry leaders and anchor investors who are dedicated to helping entrepreneurs succeed. LDV Partners are exceptionally well-connected, especially in China, our portfolio companies benefit from critical access to distribution and marketing channels in media, consumer and industrial sectors in China. Shanghai Media Group is one of the anchor investors in LDV Partners.
About Phi Group
Dedicated to art in all its forms, Phi is a multidisciplinary arts and culture organization that cultivates all aspects of creation, development and distribution. Through original productions, public programming and diverse experiences that explore various genres, Phi fosters unexpected encounters between artists and audiences. Headquartered at the Phi Centre in Montreal, Canada, Phi is an initiative of its Director and Founder Phoebe Greenberg and President Penny Mancuso.
For further information: Felix & Paul Studios: Natalie Bruss , email@example.com, 323-822-4828; Kayla Reuben, firstname.lastname@example.org, 323-822-4846
Photo courtesy of Félix & Paul Studios