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Arcturus Announces $11M Funding from Cloudtree Ventures, Autodesk and Epic Games

New round of Series A funding will enable HoloSuite platform enhancements and continued development of new tools and techniques for 3D creation tools like Maya and Unreal Engine.

Today, Arcturus, a leader in volumetric video editing and streaming tools, announced a new $11 million round of Series A funding led by Cloudtree Ventures, including investments from Autodesk and Epic Games. According to the company’s announcement, the volumetric video market will likely reach $21 billion by the end of the decade.

“We see the translation of true human performance as a fundamental building block of spatial experiences, including XR and the metaverse,” said Kamal Mistry. “Our goal is to give everyone from multinational brands to independent creators the tools they need to create authentic digital human representations in the metaverse of their choice. This year from Q2 to Q3 alone, we’ve seen a 270% increase in the adoption of HoloSuite, as more and more people are making the jump from creator to 3D creator.”

Arcturus will continue to develop its flagship HoloSuite platform to further empower content creators with the ability to edit live-action 3D performances and stream those files to any screen – including mobile devices and XR platforms. The company will also expand research into new AI tools to help improve the capture of 3D data with fewer cameras and introduce new dynamic lighting and surfacing options that will improve the quality of volumetric video. In addition, Arcturus remains committed to developing new ways to enhance live streaming concerts on digital platforms and allow viewers to watch their favorite sports from any angle.

Beyond planned enhancements to HoloSuite, Arcturus will continue developing new tools and techniques for the top 3D creation tools worldwide. For example, when paired with Arcturus’ real-time 3D codec and editing tools, volumetric video can place humans in any virtual world within the Unreal Engine, Autodesk, and Unity ecosystems. In addition, this introduces the potential to populate virtual and augmented environments with live-action performances for architects working on new designs, game developers building new worlds, virtual production teams filming against LED walls, and VFX teams creating digidoubles.

“Volumetric video tools such as Arcturus’ HoloSuite give artists a quick way to create photorealistic 3D content for countless industries,” commented Autodesk Media & Entertainment SVP Diana Colella. “We are thrilled to help Arcturus expand the potential of its existing tools. By accelerating innovation, we can help users quickly maximize the potential of using animated 3D video in their work and deliver the compelling content that the media and entertainment industry demands.” 

The new funding will expand existing support and lead to deeper interoperability between HoloSuite and Autodesk tools. As a result, artists who are used to spending time and resources on creating digital humans will have a faster way to populate a scene with live-action performances.

Arcturus also plans to expand the accessibility and capabilities of volumetric video within Unreal Engine. The company’s Unreal Engine tools enable creators to populate virtual production scenes with live-action talent – captured in 3D and in full movement – to create digital humans for VFX, characters for games. Additional tools for Unreal Engine 5 are in development, joining a custom volumetric video player released earlier this year.

“Arcturus’ tools make it easier for creators to compress, edit and stream volumetric video,” said Alasdair Coull, chief technology officer of special projects for Epic Games. “We’ve seen firsthand how Arcturus’ tools are opening the door to broader utilization of volumetric video, and we are proud to partner with Arcturus to continue to accelerate the evolution of the technology.”

According to Arcturus, the demand for augmented reality, 360-degree live broadcasts, and the growing need for metaverse content – including personal avatars – volumetric video will likely see a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of nearly 30% for at least the next five years. In 2016 a team of video experts from companies including Pixar, Netflix, Google, DreamWorks, and Uber ATG, saw a shift in the video landscape and founded Arcturus in anticipation of this trend.

The Series A funding will help Arcturus grow its infrastructure, beginning with staffing increases in research and development, engineering, and sales.

Along with Cloudtree, Epic Games, and Autodesk, the recent series A funding includes investments from Susquehanna Private Equity Investments, LLLP, and QBN Capital. It follows an initial $5 million seeding round led by BITKRAFT Ventures in 2021. In addition, BITKRAFT has announced a second, separate investment in Arcturus, along with NaHCoH3, Craig Kallman, and HBSE Ventures.

Source: Arcturus

Debbie Diamond Sarto's picture

Debbie Diamond Sarto is news editor at Animation World Network.