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Live sports VR platform LiveLike raises US$9.6 million

LiveLike, a technology company focused on offering live sports in virtual reality, has raised US$9.6 million in Series B funding.

LiveLike’s live streaming platform is designed to transport users into an interactive 360° ‘virtual suite’ overlooking the field of a featured sport event, where users can connect with friends or other fans to watch the game via Facebook.

The company’s stated mission is to make live sports viewing more dynamic and immersive by using virtual, augmented and mixed reality to more broadly appeal to tech-obsessed sports fans.

LikeLike has partnerships with the likes of FOX Sports and the French Tennis Federation and said it will use the investment to expands its partnerships and further build out its product and platform to make it “even simpler and frictionless for users”.

The company’s backers include former NBA commissioner David Stern, Evolution Media, Courtside Ventures, Elysian Park, Dentsu Ventures, and the GC VR Gaming Tracker Fund. New investors in this round were Greycroft Partners and Lepe Partners.

“LiveLike has been successful because we have built a platform that connects with younger generations seeking a more non-traditional experience,” said Andre Lorenceau, founder and chief executive officer of LiveLike.

“Thanks to our investors, we are now in a position to hire for key positions and continue delivering a premier next-generation sports OTT platform.”

David Stern said: “We have all seen that the media landscape is changing. With the rise of cord cutting and the increased competition from e-sports, there has come a true need to evolve and innovate live sports viewing. What has me excited about LiveLike is how they are bringing social viewing to live sports in a way that connects friends and fans like never before.”

FOX Sports senior vice-president of field and technical operations, Michael Davies, said: “In our nearly two years of working with LiveLike, creating our FOX Sports VR app and working on sports like hockey, football, basketball and soccer, we have found them to be innovative, nimble, and attentive to this exciting and rapidly changing platform. We are looking forward to continuing to imagine the future with them.”