Acquisitions / AR

Tysons-based AR software company Upskill acquired

With the acquisition by TeamViewer, Upskill plans to keep growing, CEO Brian Ballard told

Upskill's software in use at Boeing. (Courtesy photo)

Upskill, an augmented reality software company that has grown from a base in Tysons Corner, was acquired this month by TeamViewer, a German company that provides remote connectivity solutions.

With the acquisition, Upskill becomes a subsidiary of TeamViewer US. The company plans to continue to grow in the D.C. area, and more broadly in the U.S., as Upskill also has an office in Austin. It will do this both through hiring and building on technology partnerships in the U.S., said Upskill CEO Brian Ballard.

Founded in 2010, Upskill makes a software platform, called Skylight, which enables organizations to deploy augmented reality applications across hardware like smart glasses and mobile devices. The company has grown by offering augmented reality for business operations through a variety of industries, such as aerospace, pharma, life sciences, insurance and retail fulfillment.

While augmented reality is widely known as the technology behind Pokemon Go, these applications are used by frontline workers. It brings business info into a field of view, such as instructions, documents and more. Upskill has customers such as The Boeing Company, Merck KGaA, American Bureau of Shipping and Accenture. It has also attracted investment from industry, such as the venture arms of Boeing and GE, which joined its Series B in 2017.

“We began talking with TeamViewer in the fall around the global market opportunity for wearables on the front line,” Ballard told “TeamViewer is strategically focused on supporting customers with their digital transformation activities and has unique offerings across the full value-chain. It was clear that we had complementary people, geographies, and technology and that together would be a formidable player in a much larger combined market. With a sense of their vision and culture, it was clearly a great match and the best path forward for our business.”

Upskill’s Skylight in action. (Courtesy photo)

For TeamViewer’s part, CEO Oliver Steil said Upskill “adds significant technical and solution delivery know-how” to its U.S. team, which is the company’s largest target market.

“The enterprise AR market is huge and growing rapidly, and we are perfectly positioned to tap that potential,” Steil said in a statement.

Starting out as APX Labs in Herndon, Upskill moved to Tysons Corner in 2017. It also grew nationally, not just with clients, but through acquisition of fellow AR software maker Pristine out of Austin. The DMV area offered a place to start, and to keep growing.

“D.C. is a great place to start a company,” Ballard said. “The memories we have from the early days of getting off the ground are incredible. There is a ton of talent, mentorship in both the VC and entrepreneur community, and three airports nearby for the inevitable flights across the country. Given our target market with customers everywhere, that really mattered in terms of access to the global market.”


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