problem – solution – route to market
Research published by McKinsey in 2020 revealed that the current global pandemic has accelerated the adoption of virtual and 3D technologies. Big tech’s increasing investment and PR about XR, Metaverse (e.g. new Meta London HQ, 2022) is shifting the market interest towards immersive, future-proof solutions. Generally digital media is moving away from static 2D content to more immersive 3D experiences to satisfy viewers’ expectations. Big brands, like Nike, EY, EE are already leading the adoption.
75% of opinions made about website and company credibility come from web-design, and 94% of first impressions are design related. The ROI of good UX is 9,900% (that is, for every dollar invested in UX, there’s $100 in return) (WebFX,2021). It’s beneficial for every business to utilise the new marketing opportunities that online 3D & XR offers.
WebGL is the web-standard for browser based 3D graphics & XR. It is supported by 97.43% of devices (Caniuse, 2021), with big brands leading its adoption and inspiring its competitors to follow. Classic website CMS and hosting platforms, e.g. WordPress/Wix/Squarespace, do not have WebGL support built in, and users must invest in custom solutions. However, this is an expensive and time-consuming process (1-3 months), costing on average £50,000.
WebGL requires specialist multifaceted knowledge: web-technologies and gaming-technologies. Talented developers are scarce and expensive (£500pd). To upskill a web-developer to WebGL can take 6 months and cost £15k.
High costs and lack of training lead to slow market adoption and exclusion of start-ups, SMEs and charities, preventing them from competing with big, wealthier brands. From an equality/diversity perspective, using WebGL is currently a specialist and complex process that excludes fresh graduates and talent from lower socioeconomic classes.
The current market is dominated by cutting-edge creative agencies (Mallard&Claret/NexusStudio/Unit9/HappyFinish/Dogstudio). Projects are custom-built, high-cost (£25k-£100k) and without CMS (content editing for the clients).
There are early-stage WebGL editors such as Amazon Sumerian/PlayCanvas but they are game-focused and not integrated into the web-development workflow. Their lack of templating/marketplace means each project must be custom-built from the ground up.
CMS and app platforms, like Vntana/Rydar/Naker.io/PoplarStudio, are focused on AR and e-commerce only and do not offer web development solutions.
There is a growing need for a web-focused 3D platform & CMS that can lower costs and the entry barrier for utilising and learning WebGL. Based on ‘XR Club’ prototype testing, we estimate a 90% reduction in development costs and editing time with such a platform.
XR Club is a platform for creating online 3D/XR content, with a WordPress-like, easy-to-edit CMS, reusable templating, and marketplace. The aim is to make web-based 3D as accessible and cost-efficient as standard HTML websites.
To achieve a WordPress-like integrated platform for 3D web is challenging. 3D development is fundamentally different from web development. Interactive 3D originally developed for gaming and engineering and not for the web. our ground-breaking innovation is to merge the 2 paradigms. This is a previously unsolved, technologically challenging endeavour that we are able to conduct as a result of its past two years of self-funded base research.
XRC consists of three tiers: 1. Cloud and app framework, 2. CMS and templating, 3. Marketplace. These three layers are building on each other’s services and integrated into a single platform. Users will be able to purchase cost-efficient 3D web templates in the marketplace, easily customise them via the CMS and integrate them into existing websites via the app framework.
XRC provides a user-friendly UI/UX that is accessible without specialist knowledge and offers a wide range of reusable templates and assets. Competitors such as Squarespace/Wix/WordPress do not offer 3D content support, while Amazon Sumerian/PlayCanvas/Unity are game-focused, require graphics/coding knowledge and lack templating solutions. While creative agencies like Mallard & Claret/RESN/Active Theory/GSD&M deliver custom projects, these are too expensive (average £45k) for most SMEs and any updates must be done through the agency. Our solution will be the most efficient and cost-effective platform for creating web pages with 3D content, which is accessible to everyone, regardless of technical knowhow.
our totally disruptive approach has the potential of a 90% (ten fold) reduction in cost and editing time, as the result of its templating functionality and the marketplace. We have been present on the market as a software studio creating custom WebGL websites since 2018. Building on this experience, XRC will be our first product, offering an open platform and collaborative tools for the same clients.
Customer surveys and feedback forms will be integrated into the platform, and the information collected will be reviewed monthly and discussed by the team and its advisors. From an EDI perspective, beta testing will involve users from a variety of backgrounds, including students, content editors and marketing agencies, to ensure the product is accessible without any specialist knowledge.
FTO confirmed via Google patents with professional analysis planned concurrent with development.
TRL (Technology Readiness Level) is currently TRL 5, a prototype. The team has successfully tested it via a number of commercial projects. We are in the process applying to Innovate UK for their Smart Grant. With this grant we aim to further develop ‘XRC’ and turn it to TRL 8, “First Of The Kind Commercial System” and start to market it. To reach TRL 8, we need to build a scalable, user-centric platform that satisfies the higher commercial requirements: number of users, security, user friendly UI/UX, commercial performance.
XRC’s B2B addressable and serviceable markets comprise businesses that need websites; and digital marketing agencies creating websites for clients respectively.
GOV.UK (2019) estimates there are 5.9million SMEs in the UK, 83.4% of which operate a website (Statista,2019). At £15/month for business users, XRC’s UK addressable market is £72M/month. Its UK serviceable market is £1.7M/month, based on the UK’s 6,789 digital marketing agencies (IBISWorld,2020) paying £250/month.
Global and UK monthly addressable/serviceable markets are £525M/£8.5M and £72M/£1.7M, respectively(CAGR:17.5% 2019–27; GOV.UK,2019).
There are 400million SMEs worldwide (Globalnaps.org,2021), 51% of which operate a website (BlueCorona, 2019). Aggregated data from various other sources estimates there are 74M SMEs worldwide. Based on this lower estimate, at £15/month for business users, XRC’s global addressable market is £525M/month.
Based on 500,000 digital marketing agencies worldwide (Quora,2019), paying £250/month, the global serviceable market is £125M/month.
As a secondary market, XRC could target SMEs requiring web-based AR apps (global AR market estimated to rise to $50.4B by 2024 (Global Market Insights)).
Customers are segmented vertically by industry: fashion/retail/consumer goods/industrial/healthcare/aviation/defence and by size. XRC will target the most promising segments with direct marketing and ready-to-use demo applications. Digital agencies serving these markets right now have high margins (50-60%).
The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of virtual and 3D technologies (McKinsey, 2020). Some Shopify storefronts using 3d content more than doubled conversions rates and reduced returns by 40% (Shopify, 2020)%.
92% of 3D technology adopters viewed it as adding value to their customer experience ( Forrester, 2020 ). 67% of advertising agencies say they are making more use of AR (Vibrant Media).The UK currently has a poor global market share in this sector.
Users will have access to more engaging 3Dweb content, digital agencies will be able to create 3D Web content more efficiently, at a cost 90% lower than current methods, and become more competitive on the global market. By lowering the entry barrier (cost,expertise) UK-based SMEs will have access to modern web technologies currently only available to large enterprises. More companies will be able to access better web design, increasing profits and brand stability.
3Dweb is still a novel technology, but its use by big brands and heavy investment and PR by big-tech ( e.g. Oct 2021, Facebook name change to Meta ) put these options in the public eye. These trends create a positive market sentiment, and unprecedented demand.
Route To Market
XRC, which will establish its market position, is currently creating custom 3D websites for agencies. XRC’s target customers include businesses operating their own websites and marketing agencies creating these websites for businesses.
XRC’s product pricing will follow the industry-standard freemium model: free limited version (no premium features, limited resources); £15/month subscription for standard business use, and £250/month for enterprise level. Marketplace transactions will incur a 20% fee.
XRC’s primary market is brands who want a cutting-edge, engaging website, which is a wide, segmented market. We will specifically target certain sectors that are already leading the adoption of WebGL: start-ups/e-commerce/entertainment. Most of these brands use creative agencies for online marketing. During years 1–2, we will build partnerships with these agencies (NexusStudios, Unit9, TheMill, etc.). XRC will inform and educate the UK’s creative sector about the potential of 3DWeb and establish our authority on the topic: direct marketing (Linkedin SalesNavigator), content marketing (blogging, webinars, events) and engaging with industry bodies and events: KTN, Creative Industries Council, related DWP programmes. Linkedin and Adwords are our preferred advertisement channels. Estimated RoAS (return-on-ad-spend) is 5:1 with CAC (customer-acquisition-cost) ~£50.
This “creative community” around XRC’s platform will accelerate the development of the marketplace. XRC offers further monetisation of their expertise via selling reusable 3D themes, widgets and plugins at the marketplace. Year 1-2 revenue will be dominated by custom projects vs marketplace (80%-20%) but by year 5 this will flip and the globally scalable marketplace-based sales will dominate (20%-80%).
In terms of value proposition, cutting-edge web development is hugely advantageous in marketing; however, its costs are high: £10–50k. Our templating and marketplace reduces costs to an affordable level of £100–1k for SMEs. The user-friendly CMS makes it customisable without further costs or specialist knowledge; It features a content-rich marketplace for inspiration and rapid production. Many free examples and case studies will be published as well to help the customers understand their future-proof possibilities. XRC will trademark its brand name ‘XR Club’, patent its IP and secure technical details via team NDAs.
£1M/£3M revenue, 5,000/15,000 sales, £350K/£1M operating profit
Commence sales in Europe/US
£10M/£30M revenue, 55,000/150,000 sales, £4M/£12M operating profit
Series A funding
Sales commence in Asia/Pacific
£100M revenue, 500,000 sales, £45M operating profit
Year-5 revenue/project-cost (ROI): 37X, £25M 5-year R&D spend, £100M exports.