Pimax, the Chinese startup building wide field of view (FOV) virtual reality headsets, has secured $20 million in Series B financing.
Shortly after completing its successful Kickstarter campaign in late 2017, which garnered the company $4.2 million in crowdfunding to produce its “8K” wide FOV headset, Pimax then secured a respectable $19.2 million Series A to further its reach. The company’s Series B brings its overall outside investment to $39.2 million.
Major participants in the company’s Series B include Shanghai-based investment firm Ivy Capital and CDF-Capital, based in Shenzhen.
Pimax is best known for producing its first Pimax “8K” headset, which (dubious marketing name aside) included dual 4K panels boasting one of the industry’s widest FOVs in a consumer VR headset at an estimated 200 degrees. Many VR headsets, such as Oculus Rift S, Oculus Quest 2 and Valve Index, typically sit somewhere around 110 degrees, making Pimax a unique offering in the consumer space.
In the following years the company produced several iterations of its line of “8K” and “5K” wide FOV headsets. The company’s latest flagship—VISION “8K” X, priced at $1,300—features 4K native resolution per eye and a number of iterative improvements over the original such as integrated audio, a damage resistant coating, and better software integration with SteamVR games.
“Recently, during the difficult Covid-19 pandemic Pimax was able to successfully improve the entire product line and even expand mass production volumes,” says Pimax founder Robin Weng. “This new $20M USD funding marks a significant milestone that has brought Pimax to a brand-new chapter of its development. Pimax’s market-tested unique innovations include breakthroughs in field of view, resolution and software compatibility.”
Weng says that leading up to its latest cash injection its resources were more limited, so the company had to address issues sequentially, something which had “profound effects in departments such as logistics and technical support.”
“With the additional resources and the solid revenues we are experiencing, we can address issues and complete projects in parallel with considerably greater speed and efficiency,” Weng adds. “Other ongoing improvements are within other teams for personnel and equipment that include R&D, engineering and manufacturing capabilities. Of course, customer satisfaction is our number one priority so above all else we are focusing our efforts with our support, logistics and warehousing teams to ensure our most important resource – our customers – are always taken care of.”
In the past, Pimax has been admittedly pretty fast and loose on its promises to both backers and pre-order customers, oftentimes successively delaying main product launches as well as its long-awaited accessories. There’s still no ETA when all backers will receive both the hand and eye-tracking modules first mentioned in the company’s “8K” Kickstarter nearly four year ago, which have been consistently out of stock since the company started shipping in July.
We’re hoping the company’s new funds will help move those out the door sooner rather than later.