- Next generation design platform enables designers at brands such as Adidas and Volkswagen to shift from 2D to 3D ideation and real-time collaboration from day one
- Investment will accelerate product development, transforming long-neglected digital design workflows and enabling the construction and growth of the metaverse
- Continued development of collaboration features for non-designers reflects company’s belief in the positive impact of greater diversity in the industry and development process
- Company saw 4x revenue growth in last 12 months as teams shifted to remote working and demand for real-time collaboration capabilities soared
Gravity Sketch, the next generation cross-platform 3D design tool, today announces that it has raised a $33M Series A funding round led by Accel, with participation from GV (formerly Google Ventures) and existing investors Kindred Capital, Point Nine and Forward Partners. A number of high profile angel investors have also participated in the round. This latest investment brings the total amount raised by Gravity Sketch to more than $40M as it accelerates its mission to revolutionise long-neglected design and engineering processes, enabling teams to think and create in 3D, and collaborate in real-time.
While we think and live in a 3D world, everything we interact with — from cars and shoes, to furniture, movies and games — starts out as a 2D sketch and goes through a digital to physical design process, which is incredibly complex and time-consuming. This includes back-and-forth between design, engineering and manufacturing teams, while pen and paper sketches have to be visualised and rendered in 3D before production. Often, 2D / 3D switching is required for every iteration cycle. Sharing and reviewing designs frequently takes place via video tools or collaboration platforms and poor hand-offs between teams results in miscommunication and wasted time, as well as design cycles that can take up to 24 months. These challenges were experienced firsthand by veteran industrial designers and Gravity Sketch co-founders Oluwaseyi Sosanya (CEO) and Daniela Paredes Fuentes (CXO).
Launching Gravity Sketch in 2014, Sosanya and Paredes set out to disrupt and democratise the 3D design process and transform the inefficient processes that have been used for decades. The platform enables users to think and create in 3D while also bringing real-time collaboration to the front of the design process. With Gravity Sketch, designers, engineers and other stakeholders can share feedback and discuss issues at every stage of product development, experiencing the design through virtual reality. With the increase in remote working globally and brands taking their first steps into the metaverse, now is the ideal time for the design industry to shift to a completely digital pipeline and Gravity Sketch’s huge momentum is set to continue. Gravity Sketch has:
- More than one million downloads and a community of 100,000+ monthly users
- Become a core part of the design process at industry-leading brands, including Adidas, Nissan, Volkswagen, Ford and Reebok
- Empowered professors and students to enhance classroom creativity at 170+ schools and universities
- Recorded 4x revenue growth in the last 12 months and a 40-strong team across the UK, US and Germany
- Launched on the iOS, Steam and Oculus stores
In addition, Gravity Sketch ensures a more sustainable and cost-effective workflow. With designers able to test real-life constraints on 3D models, it eliminates the need for physical prototyping and reduces travel requirements as products no longer have to be approved in-person.
The investment will be used to continue developing Gravity Sketch’s LandingPad collaboration features to better support the non-designer stakeholders essential to the design process — a reflection of Gravity Sketch’s belief that greater diversity in the design industry and more voices in the development process will result in better performing products on the market. Companies – including the likes of Miro and Figma – have already disrupted the 2D space, enabling teams to co-create and collaborate quickly and inclusively in online workspaces, and now Gravity Sketch’s inclusive features are set to shake up the 3D environment. The funds will also be used to enhance the platform’s creative tools and scale the company’s sales, customer success and onboarding teams.
Seyi Sosanya, co-founder and CEO of Gravity Sketch, said: “3D design is the backbone of our consumer economy; integral to the production of every car we drive, every shoe we wear, every film we watch, and every video game we play. Yet the modern design process remains inefficient, convoluted and costly, with teams forced to alternate between 2D and 3D tools not fit for purpose in our hyper-collaborative, remote-working era. At Gravity Sketch, our aim is to combat these challenges by empowering teams to create and communicate their 3D ideas in the quickest and most intuitive ways possible — whether they’re designers or otherwise. We’re excited to continue disrupting 3D design with this new investment round.”
Harry Nelis, Partner at Accel, said: “In today’s climate, online collaboration tools have emerged as a necessity for businesses that want to stay agile and connect their teams in the most interactive, authentic and productive way possible. Design is no different, and we’ve been blown away by Gravity Sketch’s innovative, forward-looking suite of collaboration design tools that are already revolutionising workflows across numerous industries. Moreover, we expect that 3D design – coupled with the advent of virtual reality – will only grow in importance as brands race to build the emerging metaverse. The early organic traction and tier one brands that Oluwaseyi, Daniela and the Gravity Sketch team have already secured as customers are extremely impressive. We’re excited to partner with them and help them realise their dream of a more efficient, sustainable and democratic design world.”