After years of record-breaking venture funding in the virtual reality industry, we wondered if 2016 would continue on its torrid pace. The numbers are starting to roll in, as reported in the new Fall edition of the 2016 Virtual Reality Industry Report, researched and published by Greenlight Insights and Road to VR.

Mega deals in VR venture funding have been the story of 2016. A diverse set of companies made up the largest venture deals of the year. This year, MindMaze ($100M) and NextVR ($80M) have raised two of the largest single venture rounds we’ve ever seen. Moreover, the top ten deals make up a whopping $396M, with several massive rounds at the top end:

2016-large-investment-deals-1Excluded from the analysis of more than 150 venture deals in the 2016 Virtual Reality Industry Report are large deals in adjacent technology industries, such as Magic Leap’s $793.5M Series C (February 2016), which Greenlight Insights counts as an augmented reality deal, and Unity’s $181M Series C (July 2016), which is primarily a game engine. But even without counting these outliers, 2016 will end as a record-breaking year for VR investments.

“This year will shatter funding records. The number of deals and actual dollar value is up significantly year-over-year,” says Greenlight Insights’ Senior Vice President, Steve Marshall. “As for next year, we expect to see more breakout deals as the first wave of innovation matures.”

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However, despite the vigorous funding environment throughout much of this year, Greenlight Insights still considers the virtual reality industry to be very much in its first wave of innovation, with much of the action still at the early stages and many potential success stories still waiting to be written.

The complete analysis of 2016’s VR venture funding, and everything else you need to know about VR this year, is available in the newly updated 92-page 2016 Virtual Reality Industry Report, which includes new market revenue and hardware shipment forecasts; for a limited time you can use the special code ROADTOVR to save $500.

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