Ultrahaptics in Bristol has raised £35m to expand its technology and global customers.

The Series C round of investment was oversubscribed, with more companies wanting to invest in its technology that allows people to feel things like buttons in mid air.

The new funding is led by consumer tech investor Mayfair Equity Partners, with new investors such as major Australian fund  Hostplus. They join existing shareholders IP Group, Woodford Investment, Cornes and Dolby Family Ventures.

“The potential for mid-air haptics systems within immersive infotainment systems and human-machine interfaces is very compelling and exciting. We look forward to supporting the Ultrahaptics team in their journey to become the global platform enabling mid-air haptics,” said Daniel Sasaki, Managing Partner of Mayfair Equity Partners.

The company was founded in 2013 based on technology developed at the University of Bristol by Dr Tom Carter (above, centre) who is chief technology officer. It uses proprietary algorithms and supporting hardware to project ultrasound-driven tactile sensations in mid-air.

Ultrahaptics is currently working with supplier to the car industry such as Bosch and Harman, as well as on digital signage, location-based entertainment, industrial controls and medical interfaces. The technology has also been interesting to companies using augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) in both games and business applications such as building design.

The company also supports the international academic community through a programme designed to enable additional haptics research and development.

“We’re delighted to welcome major new investor Mayfair, while receiving further endorsement and support from our existing shareholders for the company’s exciting next phase of development. Our funding has become ever more global, reflecting the potential of our technology in industry sectors and markets all over the world,” said Steve Cliffe, CEO of Ultrahaptics (above left, with CFO Christopher Olds on the right)


Nick Flaherty