Gemba, a VR workforce training platform, secures $18m in a seed round led by Parkway Venture Capital – Cryptopolitan

Gemba, a VR workforce training platform, announced today that it has successfully secured $18 million in a Series A funding round led by New York-based investor Parkway Venture Capital.

This investment will help the company rapidly expand into Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), while also allowing it to enter the North American market as it becomes a leader in corporate virtual reality as a service (VRaaS) training spaces.

By merging software, content and services into virtual reality (VR), Gemba is revolutionizing how global companies can train their employees across multiple locations through exceptional training programs. The platform also allows these employees to access simulated factory walks and live training events just by donning a VR headset.

In the digital age, Gemba is a powerful solution to the biggest challenge facing transformation leaders – delivering powerful and effective training at scale, in a compelling and cost-effective way.

Nathan Robinson, CEO of Gemba

Gemba offers virtual masterclasses that cover topics such as supply chain management and lean manufacturing, with knowledgeable professionals running the course over a few days. The main selling point for the platform’s programs is the real-time quality, as all courses are offered live and participants can interact in real-time.

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All participants will have an avatar and can join from anywhere. And the masterclass will be attended by 25 executives from cross-industry companies such as Pfizer, Nike, Adidas, etc.

Gemba’s software is currently designed to work only with Meta’s Quest headsets, but it also plans to expand its support for all popular VR and AR devices by 2023.

Gemba way to VR

It may be too early for the excitement around virtual, augmented and mixed reality caused by corporations like Facebook’s parent company Meta. Still, it’s clear that the technology has been gaining more recognition outside of the gaming industry lately — probably because of the pandemic. Training is central to VR and leads investors to take notice.

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Last month, Loft Dynamics raised about $20 million to help address the helicopter pilot shortage through virtual reality (VR) training, while Fundamental VR raised $20 million in funding to help surgeons learn through VR.

In 2010, Gemba founded The Leadership Network – a business focused on the education of executives. After rebranding to its current name in April 2020, it has undergone a continuous transition from traditional training services to virtual reality. Years before the pandemic fueled this shift, Gemba was already looking for innovative methods to capture knowledge from its VR courses and deliver it remotely to thousands of users at once. In 2019, they launched their first corporate VR training, followed by masterclasses a year later.

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Gemba has built an impressive roster of major customers such as Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, and Nike through a successful transition to VR and self-funding from its traditional training programs. Not only that, these corporate giants were originally personal training customers before moving into virtual reality with Gemba.

A key benefit of VR for these customers is that it reduces their travel costs and time, allowing them to meet any corporate carbon reduction targets they may have.

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