Planar Systems, a Leyard company, will acquire NaturalPoint, a global leader in optical tracking and motion capture solutions, for USD 125 million in an all-cash transaction.
This is an interesting acquisition that brings Planar (and Leyard) into the high growth and strategic opportunities popping up in augmented and virtual reality-- and which in turn lead to market segments like CAVEs, drone tracking, movement sciences, sports performance, computer visualization and animation.
NaturalPoint, makers of OptiTrack, TrackIR and SmartNav branded products, is headquartered only two hours south of the Planar campus in Oregon: the close physical proximity of the two companies is a big plus in this deal. They employ a team of 60 in No. America and own a state-of-the-art 25,000 square foot facility for the optical tracking business.
Want to see how cool some of these applications are?
Frankfurt-based motion capture studio metricminds created 7678 minutes of animated soccer footage for Betradar, a company that creates statistics-based products offered in betting bureaus and casinos around the world. Add a huge warehouse, some artificial turf, goals, netting and 64 OptiTrack Prime 41 cameras and metricminds created footage illustrating summaries of soccer games in Betradar’s virtual league, a premier virtual gaming platform.
The acquisition should finalize in Q4 2016 or early Q1 2017. NaturalPoint will remain a separate business with its own executive team, customers, and market initiatives. But it is a good move by Planar, a step into the future of AV.