Epic Games announced it’s doubled the amount of cash it raised last year to kick off its metaverse ambitions. Now the company, which owns Unreal Engine and popular battle royale shooter Fornite, says it’s secured $2 billion to further build out its future metaverse platforms.

Nearly a year after its stunning $1 billion raise, Epic has secured dual $1 billion investments from Sony Group Corporation and KIRKBI, the holding and investment company behind The LEGO Group.

Sony has become somewhat of a serial investor in Epic. In 2020 Sony invested $250 million in Epic with the goal of creating “real-time 3D social experiences leading to a convergence of gaming, film, and music. That’s before the ‘metaverse’ buzzword erupted, but it’s clear where Sony was headed.

Now KIRKBI, the private holding and investment company founded by former president and CEO of The LEGO Group, Kirk Kristiansen, is looking to jump into the rapidly expanding metaverse trend.

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“Epic Games is known for building playful and creative experiences and empowering creators large and small,” said Søren Thorup Sørensen, CEO, KIRKBI. “A proportion of our investments is focused on trends we believe will impact the future world that we and our children will live in. This investment will accelerate our engagement in the world of digital play, and we are pleased to be investing in Epic Games to support their continued growth journey, with a long-term focus toward the future metaverse.”

Tim Sweeney, CEO and founder of Epic, says the investment will “accelerate our work to build the metaverse and create spaces where players can have fun with friends, brands can build creative and immersive experiences and creators can build a community and thrive.”

Epic says it will continue to have a single class of common stock, and remains controlled by its CEO and founder, Tim Sweeney. This brings Epic’s post-money equity valuation to $31.5 billion.

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  • kontis

    Important to note, in the context of this website, is that not every company defines Metaverse as something that has to be VR-related, at all.

    Surprisingly, not even Gabe Newell who gave an example of Final fantasy XIV as something reminding him of a metaverse that already exists (MMO + a lot of customizations).

    For Epic metaverse is about huge numbers of users, interactivity and creativity in a game engine. But the numbers are the most important, at least for Tim Sweeny, who likes to use Roblox, Fortnite as the prime examples, always mentioning the numbers they generate and never talks about any VR-related apps, like VRChat or Rec Room. (although when he talks about XR he hypes it a lot and seems to be optimistic about its future)

    Zuckerberg talks about something completely different that is 100% VR focused.
    “Metaverse” is just a buzzword.

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    • Corellianrogue

      They’re often using terms incorrectly. What they’re often talking about is metaworlds. There should only be one metaverse. Technically there could be more than one, but it would be best if there was just one and that it isn’t owned or controlled by anybody, like there is just one World Wide Web that isn’t owned or controlled by anybody. (I know there’s also the deep web/dark web, but isn’t that still using the World Wide Web?) The metaverse is the overall infrastructure of connected XR accessible via XR devices. Even though we’re 6 years into consumer VR (as in when it was readily available on shop shelves for anyone to buy. I know people have been doing DIY VR prior to that) the metaverse is still only in the equivalent state of the World Wide Web after a couple of years. So it’s like we’re in “1993” of the metaverse. (The World Wide Web was created in 1989 but not made available to the general public until 1991.)

      We don’t even have a metaverse search engine yet. Sure, you can search for something in SteamVR Home, or Oculus Home or Viveport, but your searches will only search within those places. A search in Steam Home won’t find you something in Oculus or Viveport, like for example searching for Horizon Worlds in SteamVR Home and you can’t access Oculus Home or Viveport from within SteamVR Home. (Although you can at least access Oculus games and apps you’ve already bought from the SteamVR Dashboard which you can bring up in SteamVR Home if you have ReVive, so that’s a good start. And you can also access SteamVR games and apps you’ve already bought from the Oculus menu in Oculus Home. Not sure about Viveport.) OK, you could just use a web browser from within VR and use Google or some other WWW search engine, but that’s going through extra steps and isn’t quite the same as what I’m talking about.

    • Bob

      Even as the general population become increasingly aware of the term, it’s blatantly obvious that for over 90% of them the whole idea of a virtual reality dimension where humans interact with each other and do things is completely lost on them.

      In other words; the majority of humans on the planet haven’t the slightest clue as to the XR origins of Zuckerberg’s vision.

  • Burt Reynolds

    Yawn.

  • Ookami

    I used to be obsessed with Legos and Lego games as a kid, so I’m interested to see how this turns out.