Doppler Labs, the Earbud Maker That Wants to Change the Way You Hear, Raises $17 Million
Two-year-old wearable tech company Doppler Labs, which specializes in "hearables," has had quite the summer.
Less than a week after the close of a highly successful month-long Kickstarter campaign, the company announced that it raised $17 million in Series B funding from investors Acequia Capital, the Chernin Group, Wildcat Capital Management. The round also includes previous investments from Live Nation Entertainment, Universal Music Group and WME.
Doppler Labs is the company behind the Here Active Listening System, whose wireless earbuds and mobile app allows users to modulate the volume of the world around them in basically real time. The crowdfunding campaign for the system raised more than $635,000 from 2,855 backers. The company's goal was $250,000, which it beat in under two days.
The earbuds are built on a technology that processes what the user hears, and then plays it back to them in 30 microseconds. Users can turn up the music at a concert, add sound effects to everyday activities or muffle the sound of the subway. Doppler Labs' first product was a set of ear plugs called DUBS Acoustic Filters.
In an announcement about the funding round, co-founder and Noah Kraft said "We envision a post-mobile future where all people use a computer, speaker and mic in their ears to enhance how they interact with each other and their environment, and we work every day to create products that move us closer to achieving that vision."
The company plans to utilize the funds to further develop the tech, build and release new products more quickly, and hire more employees to join the current staff of 47 in New York and San Francisco.
Nina Zipkin is a staff writer at Entrepreneur.com. She frequently covers leadership, media, tech, startups, culture and workplace trends.