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The WXR Fund partners with the Augmented World Expo (AWE) & Samsung NEXT to host 2nd WXR Pitch Showcase and launch 2nd WXR Cohort featuring Top XR Female Founders  

The WXR Venture Fund is thrilled to partner with AWE and Samsung NEXT to showcase founders, executives, angel investors, and VCs working together to lead AR/VR to a more diverse future.

AWE's commitment to gender parity exemplifies the support we are seeing from the XR community overall to build an inclusive foundation for the immersive technology industry. This moment in time is a unique opportunity to shape the industry in ways that could have profound ripple effect moving forward.

Amplifying the voices of women leaders and allies at events like AWE is a crucial part of building a more inclusive world at large as we work together on the future of computing.

Our partners: 

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SCHEDULE: June 1st, 2018

The WXR Venture Fund: Building an Inclusive Industry & Leveraging Economic Opportunities


Come meet the WXR Fund co-founders and help us kick off a day of fireside chats, panel discussions with industry leaders, and then come cheer on the Founders in the 2nd WXR Cohort as they pitch their startups at the 2nd WXR Pitch Showcase!

Founder Flashtalks from the 1st WXR Cohort

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From providing AR advertising solutions to using brain computer interfaces to control VR experiences, the startups in the 1st WXR Cohort bring a variety of immersive solutions to the world. Who are some of these top female Founders? Meet a few of the WXR Founders from our 1st Cohort as they step up to the mic and sizzle the audience with flash talks.

Morgan Mercer - Vantage Point
Cheryl Bayer - Living Popups
Vivian Tan - Beast Pets

Lori-Lee Emshey - Future Sight AR
Spandana Govindgari - HypeAR
Sarah Hill - StoryUP XR

Fireside Chat // From VP to CEO:  
Stepping out, Starting up, and Scaling


Named one of Variety's "Executives to Watch," Emmy-winning Baobab Studios CEO Maureen Fan joins venture capitalist Tipatat Chennavasin on the WXR Stage to talk about what it's like to lead a powerhouse storytelling startup with talent from Pixar, Dreamworks, Blizzard-- and raising $31M in capital along the way. Fan will share about her journey from VP of Games at Zynga to CEO of what FastCompany has called one of the world's most innovative companies.

with Maureen Fan - Baobab Studios
hosted by Tipatat Chennavasin - Venture Reality Fund

Mentorship Matters: The WXR Experience

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Have you ever thought about giving back, and stepping up to help another entrepreneur navigate their startup journey? Mentorships can be invaluable to founders, and because women make up less than 20% of the tech industry they often have less access to mentors. As part of the WXR Fund’s community initiatives, the beta version of the WXR Mentorship Program was launched at the beginning of 2018. Hear from a couple of the Founders from our 1st WXR Cohort as they join their WXR Mentors onstage— learn about what it takes to be a helpful mentor, as well as insight into how to find the right mentor for you.

hosted by Eva Hoerth - WXR Fund / Virtual World Society
Vivian Tan - Beast, Inc.
Lia Garvin - Google
Todd Hooper - VREAL
Lori-Lee Emshey - FutureSight AR
Salla Pallos - Sellen

Get B2B: The Laser Focus of Enterprise Business Models


“Enterprise focus” has become a big catchphrase in the XR industry over the last 18 months, and more and more consumer-focused AR/VR startups pivot to where the revenue is now. How do you create a customizable but scalable solution for other businesses? Come hear how our panelists tackle this big question and more!

hosted by Amy Peck - Endeavor
Carli Johnston - RealWear
Amy LaMeyer - EnteringVR
Brent Blum - Accenture

Veena SomareddyNeuro Rehab VR

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The Future of Business is Collaboration: Spotting Common Goals for Partnerships and Right Fit Vendors


Competition is dead. The thriving entrepreneur of the future leaves the outdated scarcity mentality behind, and sees opportunity everywhere. High performing teams become even stronger when combined with others who are goal-aligned— but how do you as an entrepreneur recognize shared goals? As a creator how do you know the right companies to team up with? How do you as an executive find the right fit in vendors for your company? In this panel we’ll discuss how to ask the right questions, meet the right people, and navigate opportunity in the XR industry and beyond.

hosted by Becky Haruyama - Microsoft/AltspaceVR
Laura Mingail - Entertainment One
Joanna Popper - HP
Armando Kirwin - Director of Virtual Reality
Jacob Loewenstein - Samsung NEXT

Don’t Wait Until It’s Too Late: How to Build a Positive Team Culture Now

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Yeah, the tech is developing at breakneck speed and startup life can be hectic… but we need to remember we’re still working with people. How do we work better, together? How do we deal with the demands of the future and control the chaos now so that we can build united teams of people who share the same vision… and are on the same page? Why does culture matter— and how can you create a positive one? How can you manage your teams more effectively? How can you as an employee step up in a startup and take the initiative to effect change your organization? Let’s talk about all these questions and what startups should be doing from day one to define values and set practices into place.

hosted by Elizabeth Scallon - CoMotion Labs
Cheryl Bayer - Living Popups
Robin Hunicke - Funomena
Jessie Irwin - IME Law
Melissa Painter - MAP Design Lab

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Fireside Chat // A Fundraising Journey


What does it take to successfully raise a round of funding in XR? What are the unique challenges and opportunities in being a female founder? Before kicking off the second WXR Pitch Showcase, we’ll hear from Allison Wood, the CEO of CameraIQ, on how she has raised $4.3M and what she has learning building the first camera experience manager.

with Allison Wood, CameraIQ
hosted by Abby Albright - WXR Fund

2nd WXR Pitch Showcase - Part 1
@ AWE 2018

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Congratulations to the 8 selected Founders of the 2nd WXR Cohort! We once again had a very strong field of applicants, and it was quite the challenge to narrow it down to only eight. This 2nd WXR Cohort is another diverse group of companies and founders with a variety of focuses like healthcare simulations, AI-powered learning experiences for early childhood, immersive shopping, neurological rehabilitation, and more.

The Founders will be paired with a curated WXR Mentor match for a 10-week long Mentorship Program, and will have the opportunity to pitch their startup to a panel of venture capitalists, angel investors, and industry leaders at the WXR Pitch Showcase. Join us for the Pitch Showcase at AWE (Augmented World Expo) on June 1st in Santa Clara, CA.

Hosted by Malia Probst - WXR Fund / VRScout

XR Founders:
Arjita Sethi - Equally
Angela Robert - Conquer Experience
Veena Somareddy - Neuro Rehab VR
Lisa Wong - Binary Bubbles
Carrie Shaw - Embodied Labs
Rosario Ballesteros Casas - VR Americas
Sophie Howe - Xesto
Neha Singh - Obsess

Todd Hooper - VREAL
Silka Miesnieks - Adobe
Amanda Robson - Norwest Venture Partners
Dessy Levinson - 645 Ventures
Ajay Ramachandran - Happiness Ventures
Alicia Garabedian - Samsung NEXT

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Fireside Chat // Activating Allies


Building a diverse industry is better when we do it together--  and that includes allies. True inclusion means everyone working together, and building equal representation

Allies have already left a big impact on the WXR Fund community through investment advice, partnerships, and professional connections. Join us for a conversation with a WXR ally we love, Marco DeMiroz of the Venture Reality Fund, and learn how you can activate allies (or yourself!) to lift others up.

We’ll dive into questions like: What does it mean to be an ally? In what ways can allies make an impact? What have we seen as a result of their contributions?

with Marco DeMiroz - Venture Reality Fund
hosted by Martina Welkhoff - WXR Fund

2nd Pitch Showcase Part 2
@ AWE 2018

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