UK-based immersive technology company Digital Catapult have announced a new programme designed to bring expert support and access to cutting-edge facilities to early-stage companies as a means to stimulate the augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) sectors.
Digital Catapult have launched a renewed call for Augmentor, a 10-week programme that aims to discover and support early-stage businesses working in immersive technologies. It brings together investors, commercial partners and start-up companies working in the UK.
Up to ten selected companies will be given ten weeks of support from Digital Catapult and its partners with the goal of creating a business that can then be pitched to an investor showcase at the end of the programme.
Businesses that make it through the selection process will be given masterclasses in relevent areas by Digital Catapult and partners such as Immerse UK, Realities Centre, University of Bath and University College London. Those on the programme will also get access to Digital Catapults own immersive technology facilities and those of Immersive Labs and Dimension Studio.
“The UK is a hub of innovation for immersive content and applications,” comments Aurelien Simon, Head of Immersive at Digital Catapult. “However, many early-stage companies working with immersive technology struggle to shape their businesses to make them commercially viable. That’s why we’re bringing together investors, commercial experts and early stage companies, to stimulate an immersive ecosystem that supports UK innovation and accelerates the creation of a VR and AR market in the UK economy.”
Several previous participants in the Augmentor programme have gone on to receive significant investment, such as Reality Zero One, who are developing a system for 3D capture and are now re-joining the programme to act as a mentor.
Rob Eastham, CEO of Reality Zero One, said: “One year on, I’m so glad we applied to Augmentor. We’re miles ahead of where we would be without the programme. We were very early stage when we joined, but now we have a studio workshop in Hackney, a growing team and a really exciting product on its way.”
Update: This article previously contained older images form Augmentor 2017. This has now been updated with the latest images to more accurately reflect the programme.