Despite the recent gut punch of staff layoffs, Canada-based smartglasses startup North and its Focals are likely to be in the game for a while longer.
On Sunday, a Canadian newspaper published a report that claims the company recently snagged $40 million in new investment cash, a financial lifeline that could help the company stay afloat as it continues to add new features to its flagship product.
The new funding comes as convertible debt bridge financing from previous investors Amazon, Fidelity, and Intel, according to a source in contact with The Globe and Mail.
In addition to the new cash influx, the report indicates that yet another round of funding may be on the way later this year, along with a potential new version of the company's smartglasses product.
Although the February layoffs were a major blow to the startup, the doubling down from its backers indicates that there's still investor belief in the company's vision of fashionable, mainstream smartglasses that effectively take the place of the Apple Watch by moving mobile notifications from your wrist to your face.
Along with a series of pop-up shops designed to help the public become familiar with the Focals wearables, which require fitting that's specific to the user's face, North has also been aggressively rolling out updates to the software.
Among the software updates are features such as sports scores, trivia, language flashcards, more calendar features, as well as a tool that allows a friend to see what a Focals wearer sees via the smartphone app.
When Next Reality contacted North for confirmation, the company declined to comment on the report.