Facebook has acquired Scape Technologies, the London-based computer vision startup working on location accuracy beyond the capabilities of GPS.
Full terms of the deal remain unknown as of yet, however, a Companies House update reveals that Facebook now has the majority control of Scape Technologies (more than 75%).
The filings show that Scape’s previous venture capital representatives have resigned from the Scape board and are replaced by two Facebook executives.
Scape’s backers included Entrepreneur First (EF) — the startup is an alumnus of the company builder program — along with LocalGlobe, Mosaic Ventures, and Fly Ventures.
Noteworthy is that EF and Fly Ventures have both already had a joint exit to Facebook of sorts when Bloomsbury AI was acquired by the social networking behemoth.
Founded in 2017, Scape Technologies was making a “Visual Positioning Service” based on a computer vision that lets developers build apps that require location accuracy far beyond the capabilities of GPS.
The technology initially targeted augmented reality (AR) apps but also had the potential to be used in mobility, logistics, and robotics. In a broad manner, Scape Technologies wanted to enable any machine equipped with a camera to understand its surroundings.
Scape CEO and co-founder Edward Miller previously described Scape’s “Vision Engine” as a large-scale mapping pipeline that creates 3D maps from ordinary images and video. Camera devices can then query the Vision Engine using the startup’s “Visual Positioning Service” API to determine their exact location with far greater precision than GPS can ever provide. The Visual Positioning Service was made available to select developers via Scape’s SDK.
Meanwhile, the acquisition by Facebook, no matter what form it takes, looks like a good fit given the U.S. company’s investment in next-generation platforms, including VR and AR.
A Facebook spokesperson provided the following statement: “We acquire smaller tech companies from time to time. We don’t always discuss our plans.”