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The importance of “co-presence” in a virtual world

Andrew Hawken is CEO and co-founder of Mesmerise. Andrew spent 10 years as a current affairs journalist for the BBC; he was drawn to the world of technology at the dawn of the internet revolution and decided to make the leap to join Microsoft in 1996. He was a pioneer of the early techniques of online journalism and helped build MSN as a portal in the UK. Later, he worked for Sky before co-founding Mesmerise in 2016. Mesmerise is a business-to-business Virtual Reality (VR) platform that provides unique and tailored VR products to solve business problems by building rich and immersive computer-generated worlds. The company creates and produces virtual ‘gatherings’, which can refer to conferences, multi-day events or company meetings in the metaverse. 

In this in-depth conversation, Andrew delves into the fundamental aspects of Mesmerise and how they differ from their competition, with a key focus on all members feeling a “co-presence”; discusses their first-ever VR Morningstar Investment Conference, which welcomed hundreds of attendees worldwide to watch live talks and try out immersive role-plays designed to appeal to investors and financial advisors; and shares his advice for businesses wanting to establish their brands in the new virtual world.

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