Technology

Ex-Disney CEO Bob Iger enters the metaverse via Genies investment

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Former Disney CEO and chairman Bob Iger is joining the metaverse.

Iger, who left Disney last year after 16 years, is investing and joining the board of metaverse startup Genies, the company said on Monday.

The Los-Angeles- based Genies, popular among A-listers like Rihanna, Lil Nas X and Jennifer Lopez, said it owns 99% of the celebrity avatar market share and includes Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group as clients, for whom it also makes NFTs, or non-fungible tokens.

Genies said Iger will help it “navigate its mission to empower humans to create their own avatar ecosystems” in including avatar fashion lines and other avatar experiences. 

“I’ve always been drawn to the intersection between technology and art, and Genies provides unique and compelling opportunities to harness the power of that combination to enable new forms of creativity, expression and communication,” Iger said.

AN avatar of Bob Iger
An avatar of Bob Iger, who recently invested in and joined the board of Genies.
Courtesy of Genies

Iger served as CEO of Disney from 2005 to 2020 and stepped down as chairman last year. His investment in Genies marks his first public move.

Genies said it has raised $100 million so far from venture capital investor Mary Meeker’s firm Bond and Brayer Capital, among others.

“We believe that avatar ecosystems are going to be the mobile apps of web3. An ambitious vision calls for rare mindshare and I can’t think of a better creative and product thinker than Bob to collaborate with in bringing this all to reality,” said Genies co-founder and CEO Akash Nigam said.

Bob Iger
Iger served as CEO of Disney from 2005 to 2020 and stepped down as chairman last year. His investment in Genies marks his first public move.
Rodin Eckenroth

The Genies board currently includes Nigam, Genies co-founder Evan Rosenbaum, Mary Meeker, general partner and founder of venture capital firm Bond, and NEA general partner and head of consumer Rick Yang

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