Zibra AI, a Ukrainian deep-tech company specializing in AI-generated 3D assets for games and virtual environments, announces it has successfully participated in the first-ever Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) Speedrun accelerator, receiving USD $500,000 to kickstart its current seed investment round and bringing its total investment to-date to USD $2.5 million.
Founded in 2021, Zibra AI aims to use the funding to expand its team and fuel the growth of its innovative generative AI technology. The company’s flagship product, Zibra Effects, is a Unity Verified Solution that can be utilized across PC and Mac, iOS and Android, consoles, and VR/AR, with use cases in industries like gaming, metaverse, and professional training simulations. By automating the creation of high-quality 3D assets and visual effects, the technology helps streamline production for developers.
Alex Petrenko, CEO and Co-founder at Zibra AI, commented:
“It was an honor for Zibra AI to have been shortlisted in the very first a16z Speedrun this year. It’s the latest investment proof point that demonstrates clear investor confidence in our technology roadmap and vision for the next two years and beyond. Our generative AI tools address the two major challenges faced by developers – creating interactive VFX and generating 3D assets and characters. With this new investment, we can accelerate our plans to develop our tech and further support and streamline development for games and all virtual experiences across industries.”
Troy Kirwin, Investment Partner at a16z, said:
“We were immediately impressed with the Zibra AI team’s ability to solve some of the most challenging technical problems in computer graphics. We’re thrilled to be a part of their journey to build an end-to-end 3D content creation platform.”
Zibra AI was one of just 32 companies out of 1,600 applicants accepted into a16z’s inaugural Speedrun, which provides funding and coaching for the most promising pre-seed startups at the intersection of games and tech. Each of the companies accepted into the program received an initial investment of $500,000 and pitched to investors at the Speedrun Demo Day held in Los Angeles in June 2023. Following the success of the first Speedrun, a16z has announced Speedrun 2024 and committed to invest up to $75m in other promising startups in the space.
55% of the Speedrun companies were located in the San Francisco Bay Area, with Zibra AI being the sole representative from Eastern Europe. Based in Kyiv, Ukraine, Zibra AI has continued to successfully raise capital alongside the hottest startups in the world despite the exceptional challenges of its wartime reality and currently has an open seed round. The company raised a pre-seed round of $1.2 million in November 2022 from investors including Gismart, SID Venture Partners, and angels including The Sandbox’s Sebastian Borget and Phil Libin from Evernote. Zibra AI was also a recipient of an Epic MegaGrant from Epic Games in December 2022.