Taiwan-based electronics firm Acer recently announced an investment into game studio Starbreeze equating to the sum of $9M USD, an amount intended to further the manufacture and commercialization of Starbreeze’s high-FOV, high resolution StarVR headset.
The investment, which comes on the heels of the news of the companies’ joint venture, was made via a ‘convertible bond’ which will be transferable into Starbreeze B-shares over the course of a 2-year period.
Acer’s purchase of convertible bonds in Starbreeze instead of company stock helps mitigate financial risk on Acer’s part. As stated by Investopedia, convertible bonds can be changed into stock at any time, and can therefore benefit from the company’s rise in stock price. However these types of bonds can also “act just like regular corporate bonds, albeit with a slightly lower interest rate,” should the stock under-perform. So a win-win for Acer, and a sizable vote of confidence for Starbreeze’s venture into VR.
The joint venture is said to allow for Acer and Starbreeze to “cooperate on the design, manufacturing, promotion, marketing and sales of the StarVR HMD to the professional- and location-based entertainment market.” So if you’re expecting a consumer-priced headset, think again.
“Acer’s investment directly into Starbreeze will greatly benefit our long term VR-strategy and further solidify the collaboration between our companies and additionally enrich our eco-system,” said Bo Andersson Klint, Starbreeze CEO.
Senior Editor Paul James went hands-on with StarVR for the headset’s great unveiling at last year’s E3, saying “[y]our peripheral vision is, for all intents and purposes, entirely enveloped in the virtual world. The combination of StarVR’s gargantuan 210 degree horizontal and 135 degree vertical field of view really wraps your brain in a panoramic VR experience. This is StarVR’s killer unique selling point and it’s beyond anything you’ve tried before.”
And since then the headset’s only gotten lighter, more comfortable, and received better optics to boot—but still lacks low-persistence OLED-displays. We’ll be keeping our eyes out for the next iteration of StarVR, and we suggest you do too, because once it comes to market (or a theme park near you) it will be arguably the most immersive headset out there.