SideQuest, the popular sideloading platform for Oculus Quest, has raised a fresh $3 million seed round, something its creators say will be used to help developers publish their apps across multiple platforms via OpenXR integration. The news was first reported in an UploadVR exclusive.
Founded by Belfast-based team Shane and Orla Harris in 2019, SideQuest has over the years become the leading sideloading platform for Oculus Quest and Quest 2 standalone headsets, and also its de facto unofficial app store. Much like gaming consoles, Quest’s official app store is directly moderated by the platform holder, which in this case is Facebook.
SideQuest now boasts over one million monthly active users, who use the platform to sideload apps which haven’t been (or won’t be) approved for the official Oculus Store or Quest’s less-moderated App Lab distribution channel.
The $3 million seed funding round was led by London-based VC firm PROfounders, and includes participation by Ada Ventures, Connect Ventures, Ascension, and SCNE.
The team’s first big raise came in early 2020 from Boost VC and Oculus VR founder Palmer Lucky, amounting to $650,000. According to The Irish Times, the most recent round puts the company’s current valuation is now around $10 million.
“This raise gives us the runway needed to focus on driving more engagement in our communities, more support for developers and more innovation in VR. We are excited to be able to provide discovery and community for the next generation of content creators,” Shane Harris told UploadVR. “We are excited to focus our energies on building tools and services to help developers target multiple platforms with OpenXR whilst leveraging the SideQuest community to grow their audience.”
“We are really excited about this next phase of growth. We want to continue to drive engagement within the VR community,” Ora Harris told The Irish Times. “It has always been our goal to help developers and the bonus is that the really enthusiastic VR community of streamers, reviewers and players makes that job so much fun for us.”