disguise has received new backing from The Carlyle Group which will allow it to enter a new phase of its growth development.
disguise has experienced significant growth over the past five years, becoming a key player in the fields of extended reality and virtual production for film and TV. In the past year, over 150 disguise xR stages have been built in more than 35 countries and disguise xR has powered more than 200 events.
disguise will now be supported by The Carlyle Group, one of the world’s largest and most diversified global investment firms with $246 billion of assets under management who will take a majority stake in the company, and by Epic Games who take a minority stake. Led by CEO Fernando Kufer, disguise employees will also retain a significant minority share, with founder Ash Nehru still the largest shareholder amongst them. Existing private equity partner Livingbridge will also reinvest in the transaction.
With deep experience in media and technology, The Carlyle Group is well-positioned to leverage its global network and resources to support disguise as it continues to drive growth in virtual production, xR, events, installations and broadcast.
Michael Wand, managing director and co-head of that Carlyle Europe Technology advisory team, will join the board of disguise. He was previously involved with investments such as The Mill and Foundry, and is currently a board member of other media tech businesses such as the digital agency DEPT.
“The virtual production market is forecast to grow substantially, and we believe that disguise is uniquely placed to benefit from the accelerated demand for LED-based visual experiences and capture further market share,” said Wand. “In partnering with the disguise management team, we will look to leverage our significant expertise in scaling media technology companies as we support the company to become a global leader.”
For disguise, the partnership with Carlyle will accelerate the company’s growth plan, focusing on international expansion, continued innovation, and enhanced support and product offerings for its customers.
“We’re proud of the journey that we have been on with our customers and are excited by what the future holds,” said Kufer. “We’re delighted to work alongside Carlyle, who understand our vision for growth in this next phase of the disguise story and are excited to keep driving innovation in virtual production and xR stages with Epic. In partnering with Carlyle, the future is very bright for disguise, its customers and its community.”