A man demonstrates the uSens Inc. Impression Pi virtual reality and augmented reality device at CES Unveiled, a media preview event for CES International, on Monday, January 4, 2016 in Las Vegas.
John Locher | AP
The so-called Metaverse has a “big” investment case, according to Puerto Rican billionaire Orlando Bravo.
Bravo, co-founder and managing partner of private equity firm Thoma Bravo, told CNBC that he believes “Metaverse” will be the big word of 2021.
“It can be invested and it will be very big,” Bravo said on Friday in an interview with CNBC’s Annette Weisbach.
The Metaverse is a science fiction concept in which people put on some kind of headset or data glasses that enable them to live, work and play in a virtual world, similar to the one in the novel and film “Ready Player One” . Depending on your point of view, it’s either a utopian dream or a dystopian nightmare.
The term Metaverse got the spotlight this month by Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg when he changed the name from Facebook to Meta and said the new company would focus on the Metaverse.
“The Metaverse is the next frontier, just like social networks when we started,” he said at the time.
The announcement was mocked in a video posted last week by Inspired by Iceland, a marketing campaign for Icelandic tourism. In the video, a Zuckerberg doppelganger introduces viewers to “Icelandverse,” a place of “enhanced actual reality without silly looking headsets.”
Dozens of other companies, including Microsoft, Roblox, Nvidia, and Britain’s Improbable, are already trying to develop the software and hardware that could power the Metaverse.
Thoma Bravo manages over $ 83 billion in assets and has a portfolio that includes more than 40 software companies. It has invested in cybersecurity companies McAfee and Barracuda, as well as corporate software company Dynatrace, among others.
In addition to the Metaverse, Bravo is also optimistic about crypto and owns an unknown amount of Bitcoin.
“How could you not love crypto?” Bravo said at CNBC’s Delivering Alpha conference in September. “Crypto is just a great system. It’s smooth. It’s decentralized. And young people want their own financial system.