Outverse raises £1m to empower the next generation of community builders

People’s desire to connect, collaborate, and create online, boomed during the pandemic and led to the rise of a new generation of tools for community builders. Yet people aren’t satisfied with current platforms and personalization – one of the features communities and builders value most — is often missing.

This is why we are excited to back Outverse, a next-generation community platform, on a mission to unlock new creative possibilities for how communities build, connect and collaborate online.

The startup founded by our very own investment team alumnus, Kyran Schmidt, and Tab Travel early employees Ollie Steadman and Jeylani Jeylani gives communities and groups the building blocks to create their own spaces online.

Far more customisable than existing community platforms, Outverse empowers communities to set up more personalized spaces, including beautifully designed forums and live video spaces. The platform also lets users add advanced functional blocks, which enable real-time collaboration, content embedding and more.

To foster meaningful conversations, Outverse’s forums are designed to avoid the noise and notification fatigue that’s so rife on other platforms that are more focused on live chat. The startup aims to be the solution of choice for forward-thinking communities looking to foster really high-quality discussion and interaction.

Kyran Schmidt, cofounder says: “We think it’s a generational moment for community tools. We’re aiming for Outverse to become the rails powering the online communities which are built over the next decade. By giving people the building blocks to customise their spaces, we’re unlocking new creative possibilities for how communities connect & collaborate online.

We’re delighted to be supported by an incredible set of investors who bring such elite community-building expertise.”

Ollie Steadman, cofounder adds: “Ultimately, we’re massively upgrading the user experience for community builders and members. 

Community platforms and tools are lagging behind in terms of the powerful, responsive, collaborative software we’ve seen emerge over the past 5 years. We’re changing that at Outverse.”

Currently, in closed beta, Outverse has several hundred community builders on its fast-growing early-access waitlist. The closed beta has been shaped in close collaboration with many communities over the past months – including designer and builder communities, communities of shared passion and interests, and solopreneur-run communities.

We are excited to lead Outverse’s £1M pre-seed round, joined by Connect Ventures, and an exceptional group of angel investors who bring an incredibly rich community-building expertise, including Nicolas Julia, founder and CEO at Seedcamp portfolio company, Sorare, as well as founders and executives from the likes of Songkick, Grabyo, Revolut, Dropbox, Airbnb, Lyst and more. 

On why we invested, our Partner Tom Wilson comments:

We’ve seen the power of community across some of the fastest growing companies in our portfolio. However, the tools that currently exist are not designed for the specific needs and requirements of community builders. Communities small and large will benefit from Outverse’s tools to unlock their magic and drive more meaningful collaboration and connections. We feel fortunate to partner with Kyran, Ollie and Jeylani at this exciting stage of their growth.” 

The team plans to use the funding to scale access to the closed beta and onboard more communities and users onto the platform, aiming to further open up access to the platform later this year.

To learn more and sign up for early access, visit Outverse. You can also read more in the team’s own words here!

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