$30M Investment by Andreessen Horowitz in Gaming Startups

Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), a well-known venture capital firm, recently announced that it will invest $30 million in various technology-centric gaming startups. This investment will specifically target startups in the AI, VR/AR, and Web3 games sectors. Andrew Chen, a general partner at a16z who oversees the Games One Fund, shared that they are focused on investing at the intersection of technology and games. This includes areas like AI infrastructure, 3D tools, VR/AR, web3 games, and gamified consumer apps.

The $30 million investment will be distributed over the next 45 days through a16z’s early-stage accelerator program called “SPEEDRUN.” Each startup that joins the program will receive $750,000. The SPEEDRUN program runs for 12 weeks and offers participants financial support, access to industry coaches and mentors, and a community of ambitious founders. Chen emphasized that a16z is open to startups at various stages, from those in the early idea phase to those with established products and revenue.

Competition for admission into a16z’s SPEEDRUN program is fierce, with only 1% of applicants being accepted in the last cohort. Chen mentioned that 80% of companies from the first cohort of SPEEDRUN secured funding from investors following Demo Day. The application deadline for the program is May 19, and the course will take place in Los Angeles, California, from July 29 to October 20, 2024.

Some previous graduates of a16z’s SPEEDRUN program in the Web3 gaming sector include Matchday, a soccer-themed game, and Promodium, a game based on nonfungible tokens (NFTs). Andrew Chen is in charge of managing a16z’s Game Fund One, which has a total value of $600 million. The fund was launched in 2022 and has made investments in well-known companies like Roblox, Sandbox, and Sky Mavis, the creators of the blockchain game Axie Infinity.

A16z has also invested in blockchain-based gaming startups through its cryptocurrency division. Some examples of these investments include Mythical Games, Yield Guild Games, Azra Games, CCP Games, NOD Games, and Voldex. The Web3 gaming market is expected to experience significant growth, with a projected increase from $154 billion to $614 billion by 2030, representing a compounded annual growth rate of 21.8% according to a report by Fortune Business Insights published in January.

Fran Swartwood

Fran Swartwood

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