VirZOOM

Turning Exercise Into a VR Experience

Company Information

Website:

https://www.virzoom.com/

Sector:

Virtual Reality

Location:

Cambridge, MA

VirZOOM transforms exercise into an immersive virtual reality experience.

Using a VR headset and digital sensor, riders can plug its VZfit system into stationary bikes, and pedal their way across the globe. Additionally, users can engage in exciting full-body workouts while flying, battling, and playing in various VR landscapes and simulations.

Perhaps an article from Forbes describes the experience best:

“Last night, I flew on a winged horse in a magical land, piloted a helicopter through a peril-filled river canyon, rode a horse in an old West stampede, and blasted tanks in a desert landscape. Oh, and I burned a few hundred calories, too, all from a stationary bike in my bedroom… The best part? I barely noticed I was working out.”

Nearly $73 billion is expected to be spent on VR technology in 2024. And that includes the rising demand for VR headsets. Today, there are about 10 million headsets globally. But by 2025, that number is projected to reach 132 million.

VirZOOM’s team knows how to create engaging, immersive content. Prior to starting the company in 2015, its leaders created a pair of successful video games: Rock Band ($2 billion in lifetime sales) and Guitar Hero ($1 billion in lifetime sales).

VirZOOM has a patent for its technology, and was named a Top 10 Most Innovative Company by Fast Company in 2018. In Q1 2021, the company launched in Facebook’s Oculus Quest store.

Team Background

Eric Janszen - Co-Founder & CEO

Eric brings a wealth of financial and business experience to VirZOOM.

Prior to starting the company, he was an economic analyst for Twin Focus Capital Partners, a company offering investment and financial solutions to high-net-worth individuals and businesses.

In addition, he previously founded iTulip, an online financial services company that attracted more than 8 million visitors. This platform was credited by the New York Times for accurate financial forecasts, and CNBC called it “the place to go for a contrary view of the markets.”

For five years, Eric served on the Board of Directors for TruTouch Technologies, a company that developed a fingerprint sensor that automatically detects a person’s blood alcohol content.

He was previously Managing Director of a seed investment firm that was part of six successful exits.

He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Resource Economics from the University of Massachusetts.

Eric Malafeew - Co-Founder & CTO

Eric has more than 20 years in the videogame industry.

He developed popular games such as Guitar Hero ($2 billion in sales) and Rock Band ($600 million in sales).

Before starting VirZOOM, he worked for 15 years at Harmonix Music Systems, a video game development company, serving as a lead engineer and technical director.

Outside of the video game industry, Eric gained technical experience as a simulation engineer with Lockheed Martin.

He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech and a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.

Anthony Larusso - Director of Hardware Engineering

Anthony spent four years as a program manager for Bluefin Robotics, a company developing automated underwater transportation.

In addition, he served in similar roles for BAE Systems, a British defense and aerospace company, and Analog Devices, a company designing and manufacturing digital circuits.

Anthony studied at MIT.

Rob Kay - Lead Game Designer

Rob has been a game designer for 14 years. He specializes in games featuring virtual reality, cameras, motion controllers, and robotics.

He previously served as Lead Game Designer for Anki, an open-sourced gaming platform.

In addition, he was Director of Design for Harmonix Music Systems.

Rob earned a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Visualization from Bournemouth University.

Co-Investors

Equity Resource Investments

An investment firm with a focus on the real estate industry.

Fairhaven Capital

A VC fund investing in early-stage tech companies.

Greycroft Gaming Tracker Fund

A division of Greycroft Partners that invests in startups targeting the VR, AR, and eSports industries.

Skywood Capital

A VC fund investing in early-stage companies with a focus on VR.