Niantic Labs, the studio behind worldwide phenomenon Pokémon GO, has raised $200 million USD of new capital to continue its augmented reality (AR) efforts.
The Series B round was revealed by the The Wall Street Journal on Friday, with the news outlet revealing the investment was led by Spark Capital, including participation from Founders Fund, Meritech, Javelin Venture Capital, You & Mr. Jones and NetEase, Inc. Spark Capital partner Megan Quinn will join Niantic’s board.
”We are excited to be working with NetEase, Spark, and our other new investors. This round enables new strategic opportunities and enhances our ability to make long term investments in augmented reality and the Niantic real-world platform,” said John Hanke, CEO of Niantic, in an emailed statement.
The funding round follows another big announcement made earlier this month by Niantic, with the company building a new AR title called Harry Potter: Wizards Unite with similar properties to Pokémon GO. “Players will learn spells, explore their real world neighborhoods and cities to discover & fight legendary beasts and team up with others to take down powerful enemies,” Niantic explained in a press release. “We’re thrilled to partner with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, and WB Games San Francisco’s development team to bring this magical and beloved series to life in a brand new way.
This month also saw Niantic roll out a global Pokémon GO event called the Global Catch Challenge, tasking players to catch 3 billion Pokemon over the course of seven days.
Niantic originally began as an internal Google startup, creating sci-fi title Ingress. The studio separated from Google in 2015 and release Pokémon GO in 2016. To date the company has managed to raise around $33 million from investment, whilst Pokémon GO has managed to earn over $1 billion in revenue.
VRFocus will continue its coverage of Pokémon GO, reporting back with the latest updates.