Roy Gilbert

Going into a Talespin

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I made an old man cry the other day.

“I have some bad news,” I told the gray-haired worker with bushy eyebrows and a blue button-down shirt. “We are letting you go.”

First he was defensive. Then he got angry. Then he wept.

But Barry — that’s his name, Barry — has been through this before, many, many times. He’s become a bit of a celebrity for getting fired by reporters. I was just apparently especially bad at it.

Talespin, a spatial computing company that aims to help rapidly transforming workforces learn new knowledge and gain new skills, first trotted Barry out last year to introduce its virtual and mixed reality training solutions . Firing a “virtual human” is an example of the soft skills such as leadership and communication that the company’s CoPilot product can help with.

But the Culver City startup has grander ambitions, and with $15 million in new funding led by Cornerstone OnDemand Inc. (NASDAQ: CSOD), “Now we can tell the bigger story,” CEO Kyle Jackson told me moments before I made Barry cry.

HTC also joined the round as a new investor, with participation from existing investors including Farmers Insurance Exchange.The Series B quadruples Talepspin’s funding to more than $20 million. The company will use the money to integrate its extended reality (XR) training solutions into Cornerstone’s cloud-based learning, talent management and talent experience offerings. (XR is an umbrella terms covering all real-plus-virtual environments including augmented, mixed and virtual reality.)Talespin will also use the new financing to power its talent […]

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