Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs just joined a $12 million funding round for hologram startup Proto

Hologram performances by superstar artists have become a thriving business, with hologram versions of legendary artists from Tupac to Frank Zappa and Whitney Houston appearing on stage in recent years.

Today (April 12) we learn that a hologram startup called Proto Inc., formerly known as PORTL, has raised $12 million in a Series A round led by TRUE Capital Management (Coinbase, Palantir).

Additionally, artist and entrepreneur Sean “Diddy” Combs has invested in the company and has also been named as a consultant.

Proto claims that its “proprietary state-of-the-art technology” enables what it calls “interactive holoportation”.

According to Proto, this process allows a person to “beam” themselves to a location in real time when they cannot physically be there.

The Los Angeles-based company says its technology is already being used across multiple industries, including entertainment, education, retail, corporate, business, marketing, fashion and the art world.

Also participating in Proto’s Series A round were tech investor Tim Draper (Tesla, SpaceX, Twitch), early Uber investors Jillian Manus and Structure Management’s Mike Walsh.

Quavo of Migos and dozens of former and active professional athletes, including Marshawn Lynch, Albert Pujols, Robert Griffin III, Luke Walton and Breanna Stewart have also invested in the company.

Proto says Combs was introduced to the startup when he used the new technology to “beam” from Miami to Los Angeles to sing Happy Birthday to his son Christian “King” Combs, an event that has garnered millions of views across the globe triggered by social media.

Proto says its “holoportation” technology has been used by the CEOs of IWC Schaffhausen and Formula E racing, as well as brands including AT&T, T-Mobile, DHL, Diageo, Christie’s, Chase Bank, Kia and Mercedes-Benz Stadium was in Atlanta.

Notable people who have used Proto recently include Ellen Degeneres, Lewis Hamilton, Usain Bolt, Tombogo (at Proto’s New York Fashion Week debut) and Iris Apfel for launching her line with H&M.

Christie’s also uses Proto for its NFT auctions, amfAR introduced it at its Cannes gala honoring Spike Lee, and NBA Champion Danny Green used it to launch his ring NFT.

Proto claims it’s the “ideal showcase” for NFTs, starting with the first NFT developed for a Proto by Nicole Buffett (later auctioned off by Snoop Dogg).

Additionally, Proto has been used at major events at NYC.NFT and Miami Crypto Experience, and has dominated the NFT space Art Basel with activations attended by ArtRepublic, SuperRare, Red DAO, DeadMau5 and Micah Johnson’s Aku World.

“Sean Combs has always been an inspiring pioneer in music and business – he’s constantly changing the game with everything he does.”

David Nussbaum, Proto Inc

David Nussbaum, CEO and Founder of Proto Inc, said, “Sean Combs has always been an inspirational pioneer in music and business – he’s constantly changed the game with everything he does.”

“We were honored to bring his family together last spring, and it became the perfect example of how Proto connects people for meaningful, emotional interactions like no other technology.

“We are very excited to be working with him as we make the future a reality now.”

music business worldwide Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs just joined a $12 million funding round for hologram startup Proto

Fry Electronics Team

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