VR Observer was excited to sit down with Adam Draper, the Founder and Managing Director of Boost VC to get his take on VR and AR.
In 2009, Adam founded Xpert Financial, a secondary market for private securities. After settling millions of dollars in private security transactions and becoming a registered broker-dealer, he left Xpert Financial in late 2012 and began angel investing, where he backed such startups as Coinbase, Plangrid, and Earnest.
Adam then partnered up with Brayton Williams and to change the face of global startup mentorship. The focus of Boost VC on future technology development stems from Adam Draper’s dream to create an Iron Man suit. He also has a very large comic book collection.
VRO: Tell us a little about yourself, what is your background?
AD: I am a 2nd-time founder and 4th generation venture capitalist.
I co-founded a company out of UCLA creating a secondary market for private securities, over 4.5 years at Xpert Financial; I eventually left to help startup founders get started. Boost VC has now accelerated 185 startups over 4.5 years.
Boost VC is “a family of founders making Sci-Fi a reality.” What lead you to a love of Sci-Fi? Favorite Sci-Fi book?
I started with Comic Books: Spider-man, Iron Man, Alpha Flight, X-Men, Super Boy, Teen Titans… and then evolved to books: Harry Potter, Enders Game, The Name of the Wind, Red Rising, the Foundation, Ready player one…
Science Fiction drives the imagination and really does prompt the possibilities of humanity. Through our verticals: Blockchain, Bitcoin, VR/AR, we get to participate in building the future. We find ambitious founders who inspire the world to change.
VRO: When looking for companies to invest in, what takes a higher priority? The founders or the idea itself?
AD: People first. We want founders who want to win. Persistence is key.
VRO: Boost VC invests in the future of Sci-Fi (bots, drones, AI, VR/AR). Where do you see these technologies merging and having the most impact? Example – Drones and AI, Quantum computing and VR.
AD: I don’t think it’s important about where emerging technologies merge. The conversation we are constantly having is about whether or not the technologies actually solve problems in the world, and where are those problems and how big is that opportunity. I think founders need to look at problems first and technology they are using second.
VRO: As a cofounder what has been your greatest challenge?
AD: Building a brand that people trust.
VRO: How did you approach the challenge, overcome it and what were the lessons learned?
AD: As a founder, you make mistakes every day. There are so many decisions we make in order to further our business, and we can’t be right about all of them. I think the most important thing in the venture business in general has been aligning ourselves with the founders as much as possible and exceed expectations on the service we deliver. Focusing on specific verticals was the best decision we ever made to become well respected as thought leaders in the spaces.
VRO: How does Boost VC see VR/AR evolving? What markets outside of gaming do you see as having the most potential?
AD: Education is our major play. We think VR is going to fundamentally change the way we learn.
VRO: What excites you most about VR/AR?
AD: That our gamers in the future are going to be in awesome shape. And we will learn things in VR like we would in the matrix.
For AR, I’m most excited about having a pet tiger or dragon that follows me around in the world.
VRO: There are a significant amount of articles that speak to the “battle” between VR and AR and which will emerge as the dominant technology. Personally, we see them as apples and oranges; each will have its place. What is your take on VR vs. AR?
AD: They are different. Different uses, they solve different problems. It’s not a battle; the technologies will overlap a fair amount.
VRO: What do you see as the future of VR/AR?
AD: Everything. We are all going to have computer glasses that can do VR and AR, and it is going to drive all communication in the world.