Pipelinefx, a leading provider of enterprise renderfarm management software for 3D animation and interactive entertainment, has closed its Series A investment round led by Hawaii venture capital firm PacifiCap Group Llc. Several members of the UH Angel investment network also participated in the transaction. Pipelinefx, which started operations in 2002, was founded by a team of ex-Square USA developers and principals of Honolulu-based systems integration firm Honcad, who built and maintained Square USAs animation infrastructure for the ground-breaking 3D-animated FINAL FANTASY: THE SPIRITS WITHIN.
Pipelinefx software engineers Troy Brooks, Anthony Higa and Eric Salituro developed software at Square USA that Pipelinefx has since improved and commercialized. Pipelinefxs existing customer base includes industry leaders doing 3D animation, vfx and state-of-the-art computer games, such as Electronic Arts, LucasArts, Mainframe Ent. and Reel FX Creative Studios.
Pipelinefx is the phoenix that has risen from the ashes of Square USA, said ceo Bill Spencer. Square USA invested almost $3 million dollars to build the original version of the software but was forced to close due to the poor box office performance of FINAL FANTASY. FINAL FANTASY, the computer game, however, is one of the most popular role-playing games of all time and is in its 12th version.
Pipelinefxs improved version of the Square USA software is an essential tool required by animators and game developers to manage their renderfarms. The Pipelinefx team totally re-wrote the software called qube! Remote Control and has had great success in selling it to major game, animation and film companies.
Interactive entertainment and digital media are tremendous growth markets that hold great potential for Pipelinefx, according to Jeff Au, managing director of PacifiCap Group. We think Pipelinefx is a great example of how a Hawaii-based tech company can successfully compete in a vibrant global marketplace and address the needs of world class customers, he said. PacifiCap Group is Hawaiis largest locally based venture capital fund and has strong ties to markets in Asia, where 3D animation and computer game development are strong growth markets.
UH Angels are excited about our investment in Pipelinefx because of the potential of this company, added Rob Robinson, University of Hawaii entrepreneurship professor and leader of UH Angels, a private-investor network in Honolulu. Pipelinefx is right on the bleeding edge of a true digital revolution in the way information reaches us; not just games and movies, but very soon everything from training to shopping. They address a true market pain, with unique and powerful software.
Built by industry professionals for the most demanding 3D animation production environments, qube! Remote Control is a next-generation enterprise class renderfarm management system built for environments as large as 10,000 processors or more. qube! is highly customizable, extensively scalable and can be integrated into any production workflow. qube! operates in Red Hat Linux, Windows XP, 2000 and 2003, Mac OS X and IRIX environments. qube! comes with a Maya job type that contains everything necessary to submit and execute batch Maya jobs. qube! supports Gelato, Shake, SOFTIMAGE, 3ds max, mental ray and other 3D animation software applications.
Pipelinefx (www.pipelinefx.com), with headquarters in downtown Honolulu, Hawaii, was founded in 2002 and markets its leading enterprise renderfarm management software to the 3D animation, vfx, video and game industries.