In October this year, OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei decided to leave the company to start his own venture. Pei has now announced that he has successfully raised $7 million in seed financing from his friends and family for the new venture, which is set to be unveiled early next year.
The lineup of seed investors in Pei’s new venture includes iPod inventor Tony Fadell, YouTuber Casey Neistat, Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin, Reddit CEO Steve Huffman, PCH CEO Liam Casey, Web Summit founder Paddy Cosgrave, and Product Hunt CEO Josh Buckley.
Carl Pei said in a statement:
I am grateful and tremendously excited to have friends of this caliber supporting us in building what’s next. We plan on moving aggressively against our vision, and can’t wait to see how the market will react.This seed investment will support the creation of a head office in London, hiring of the team, and finance ongoing product research and development efforts.
According to a report from Wired, the upcoming venture is audio-related, and the first products are expected to be launched next year. While Pei still hasn’t revealed all the details, he says the company will have a broader focus than just headphones.
Pei told Wired that he didn’t feel constrained at OnePlus but decided to leave the company as he wanted to try something different.
I don’t have anything against my time there. I learned a lot. I kind of grew up there. Now, in my thirties, I want to try something new.
Pei has also denied claims that he had a fallout with OnePlus co-founder and CEO Pete Lau.
It was an amicable departure and we’re still in touch. We text each other once every couple of weeks. I told him (I was leaving) face to face at a cafe. I don’t think he saw it coming, but I very calmly laid out my gratitude and what I wanted to do next. We talked a couple of times (after that) and in the end he agreed and is supporting me.