Building the Metaverse with Gather

By Shaun Maguire on behalf of Team Sequoia

The Gather office in action

When Sequoia first came across Gather, we described the platform as “Minecraft meets Zoom.” We couldn’t neatly fit the company into one box, be it virtual events, gaming or video conferencing — and that’s one of the things that intrigued us. Gather is creating a new category. It’s a social gathering and communication platform that covers every facet of real life: work, community and play.

Gather enhances real-life moments by removing constraints of the physical world. Users can easily build custom 2D spaces that bring a sense of place to being together online. While initially Gather has been used for more expected, ephemeral use cases like events — the 10k-person NeurIPs conference was hosted on the platform in December — the company has dramatically scaled into use cases that create more persistent and permanent experiences like remote office spaces, virtual communities and simulated campus spaces.

The four Gather co-founders (Phillip Wang, Alex Chen, Kumail Jaffer and Nate Foss) are outlier young talents. They started working together two years ago to hack around on telepresence ideas. When the world began sheltering-in-place last year, they focused on the current incarnation of Gather. As relatively recent college graduates from CMU and MIT, they designed Gather to stay connected with their friends and families. What started as a hobby project turned out to be lightning in a bottle.

In the short time since we’ve been working with this team, we’ve been blown away by their speed. You give them a product idea and, if they like it, it’ll be implemented within a few days. But we’ve also been blown away by their sense of purpose and their vision. The Gather team is creating a virtual world that simulates real-life experiences and interactions, and enhances them by removing the constraints of the physical world.

While Neal Stephenson coined the term “The Metaverse” in his 1992 novel Snow Crash and gamers talk about the metaverse as an escape, Gather has a different viewpoint. Phillip, Alex, Kumail and Nate see the Gather metaverse as a place built on your true identity where you can create new communities around your skills, interests and more.

Less than a year after launch, the company has incredible momentum — amassing over 4M users — and traction in the creation of this metaverse. We’re thrilled to partner with them on this journey.

Gather is entering hyper growth and is hiring for all roles. If you’re interested in helping build the metaverse email jobs@gather.town

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