As the world increasingly embraces Web3, corporations are turning to metaverse applications to stay ahead of the curve. Based on Verified Market Research, the Metaverse market is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of 39.1 percent from 2022 to 2030, reaching USD 824.53 Billion in 2020 and USD 27.21 Billion in 2020. This is due to the increasing demand for AR/VR content and gaming and the need for more realistic and interactive training simulations.
Recently, LG Electronics North American Innovation Center (LG NOVA) has announced the “Selected 20” startups advancing to the next stage of its Mission for the Future global startup competition. The top 20 (selected from a pool of over 1,300 applicants) received $100,000 each and $2 million overall for 20 proof-of-concept projects. The entrepreneurs are now collaborating with LG NOVA counterparts to create a business framework for working with the rest of the LG company. The Top 10 will have to show that their business concept is realistic and profitable and that their technology serves to advance LG and LG NOVA’s broader mission of innovating for a better life.
Of the group, strong companies are exploring a variety of applications with the intent to drive broader adoption of new immersive, interactive technologies and create more significant business opportunities. These companies show great promise in the Metaverse category – an area where LG is pursuing numerous possibilities for growth. Startups that win the competition will have the opportunity to further develop their product offerings with the help of LG mentorship and resources. But beyond that, these companies also have the potential to change the way we interact with technology and each other on a global scale.
Before we dive into the companies, let’s first understand the strategic basis of the metaverse for innovation and business. The metaverse can be defined as a 3D virtual world that is created by humans and exists on the internet. It is a shared, persistent space where people can interact with each other and digital objects using avatars. In many ways, the metaverse is the next evolution of the internet – a more immersive, interactive, and realistic way to connect with others and digital content. Several metaverse applications are already being developed and used by businesses and consumers alike. These include AR/VR content and gaming and training simulations that can be used for everything from employee onboarding to product development.
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There are so many startups claiming to be working on a metaverse solution. LG’s “Selected 20” companies have demonstrated a clear understanding of the metaverse and its potential for businesses and consumers. They also have innovative solutions ready to deploy on a wide scale.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the judging criteria that LG used to select the “Selected 20” and what to look out for when it comes to value creation in the metaverse. First, it’s essential to define proof-of-concept. According to LG Nova, “Our goal in working with startups on PoC is to show data in-market to verify the feasibility of the idea. This type of PoC can be conducted in many different ways. We can leverage (and we have) LG’s workforce and operations for the PoCs. We’ve done smaller test pilot implementations with beta users. Many startups have a user base where we can test out new concepts. The PoCs largely depend on the companies we work with and where they are in their product development cycle; however, we’re open to new ideas on how we can explore the feasibility of the idea with the participants.”
This means that the “Selected 20” have already developed a solution that has been proven to work on some level. This is an important distinction, as many companies working on metaverse solutions are still in the early stages of development and have yet to produce anything tangible. Furthermore, the ideal startup profile should have a working product and a clear understanding of how that product can be used to create value for businesses and consumers.
With this in mind, let’s look at some of the startups LG has selected as part of the “Selected 20.”
iQ3 Connect is a VR Collaboration and Training Platform that enables companies to train their employees virtually in a realistic and interactive environment. The company is developing the Enterprise Metaverse to assist industrial firms in becoming virtual-first, long-term enterprises. Its SaaS platform allows for real-time, immersive (XR) cooperation and interaction with Complex 3D Content using only a browser, transforming how we design, learn, and interact.
The implications of the technology are far-reaching. The ability to design, learn, and interact in a realistic and immersive 3D environment has the potential to revolutionize many industries, from architecture and engineering to healthcare and manufacturing. Moreover, this can all be done in a web browser, making it accessible to anyone with an internet connection.
Snickerdoodle Labs is building the data layer of Web 3. The startup is building a privacy-first, agnostic data-sharing layer where individuals own their data and the value it generates. Snickerdoodle Labs uses a tokenized data architecture to ensure that customers have complete control over their data and that online interactions are more secure.
For the consumer, this means they will finally have control over their data and access. They will receive compensation for the value of their data. For businesses, this provides a way to obtain high-quality data while respecting consumers’ privacy. This is a potentially game-changing development, giving consumers the power to monetize their data while ensuring businesses can receive the data they need without violating anyone’s privacy.
YBVR is building the next version of immersive broadcasting with cutting-edge technologies for more engaging VR video experiences. YBVR brings live events to fans with the technology to quickly turn streaming live video content into a new level of fan engagement through immersive viewing experiences.
This significant development shows a demand for more immersive and engaging VR content. The ability to turn live video content into an immersive experience can change how we consume media. By bringing live events to fans in a more immersive way, YBVR is opening up new possibilities for how we experience the world, from sports to concerts to conferences.
These startups show Proof of Concept with a working product and clear value proposition for businesses and consumers. This is an essential criteria for the ideal startup profile, as it shows that the company has a viable product that can be used to create value. Moreover, these startups can advance LG’s goal of becoming a leading player in the global Metaverse market. This is due to several factors, including their products’ immersive and interactive nature, the ability to reach a broad audience, and the potential to revolutionize many industries. As such, these startups represent a substantial investment opportunity for LG.
Other tech giants can learn from LG’s approach to investing in the Metaverse. by taking a portfolio approach and investing in a diverse range of startups, LG is diversifying its risk and increasing its chances of success in this emerging market. This is an intelligent strategy that other companies would be wise to emulate. Therefore, it is essential to highlight the critical action items for how enterprises can achieve similar success in the Metaverse with a clear strategy that doubles down on value-add startups.
● Create an in-house incubator or venture fund: One way to increase your chances of success in the Metaverse is to create an in-house incubator or venture fund. This will allow you to invest early in the most promising startups and help them grow their businesses. In addition, it will give you a better understanding of the Metaverse ecosystem and enable you to build relationships with the most influential players in the space.
● Launch a corporate accelerator: Another way to increase your exposure to the Metaverse is to launch a corporate accelerator. This will give you access to a broader range of startups and help you build a more diverse portfolio. In addition, it will allow you to offer mentorship and resources to the startups you invest in.
● Develop a clear investment strategy: It is also important to develop a clear investment strategy. This means knowing what industries you want to be involved in and what types of companies you want to invest in. A clear strategy can better decision which startups to invest in and how to support them best. For example, suppose your company is in the automotive industry. In that case, you may want to invest in startups working on new transportation technologies or developing new ways to use data from connected vehicles.
The LG Group has taken a leading role in investing in the Metaverse and is well-positioned to capitalize on the shift to this new paradigm. However, other enterprises need to take note of the company’s success and learn from its example. By following the steps outlined above, enterprises can increase their chances of success in the Metaverse and position themselves as leaders in this emerging market.