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Waitroom launches livestreaming platform for real-time communication

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Waitroom is unveiling a new livestreaming platform for real-time communications that enables sequential, authentic one-on-one engagement between hosts and large audiences.

Veteran entrepreneur cofounders Vinny Lingham, Margaret Grobler, and Michael Gaylord started the San Diego, California-based company to create one-on-one engagement between hosts and individual users, even with large audiences. The launch will kick off with a virtual launch festival featuring a lineup of sessions hosted by celebrities, business leaders, and social media influencers.

Waitroom was designed to foster short, authentic conversations between well-known individuals and their followers. It kind of feels like a line for fans at a celebrity event, only this kind is a digital event.

Waitroom is the newest business venture from Lingham, who brings heavy expertise in blockchain investments and founding successful technology startups, and will act as CEO of the company. The company is backed by top Silicon Valley investors including Ari Emanuel of Endeavor, David Sacks of Craft Ventures, Mike Maples, Jr. of Floodgate, and David Frankel of Founders Collective.

Waitroom allows subject matter experts—entrepreneurs, founders, celebrities, thought leaders, influencers and more—to host real-time sessions for their audience and make individual connections.

Waitroom structures engagement around a timer, allowing hosts to speak to one person at a time, while others wait their turn in an ordered queue on mute with their cameras off. Viewers can also tune into the conversations without participating to simply watch and listen. Each conversation is recorded, clipped, and shared to the host(s) through an indexable content library, making Waitroom a simple content generator for creators.

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Waitroom is a way for celebrities to meet one-on-one with fans.

Celebrities expected to participate in the launch festival include Tan France, British-American fashion designer, television personality on Netflix’s Queer Eye, and author; Kahli Green: TikTok influencer and Yale University’s first Black student body president; Jimmy Wales: founder of Wikipedia, internet entrepreneur, and technology visionary; Alli Webb, founder of Drybar, women empowerment leader and motivational speaker; and Amanda Kloots: co-host of The Talk, dancer and fitness instructor.

As for the blockchain, the comapny said Waitroom is poised to serve communities that rely on or are interested in blockchain technology to carry out important related discussions. For example, Waitroom’s format is ideal to announce the launch of NFTs. Currently, the platform has verified NFT profile picture support, and plans to have gated queues and shows based on NFTs later this year. This means creators will be able to assign the rights to Waitroom queues and shows based on a particular NFT collection or Mint address.

Vinny Lingham, Waitroom CEO, is also very well known as the “Bitcoin Oracle” – with top-tier investors in the crypto space working alongside him on the Waitroom launch, consumers can expect to see plenty of crypto news coming out of Waitroom shows and Waitroom functionality announcements that will be relevant to those in the crypto space.

The company has 15 employees.

“The lightbulb moment for me was during COVID lockdowns when I was doing back-to-back video calls, very inefficiently every day. Needlessly long meetings and cumbersome group calls were eating up my time,” said Lingham, in an email to VentureBeat. “I figured there had to be a way to save time while still allowing me to talk to all the people seeking to connect. Waitroom’s format was born out of that need to be more time efficient, but what surprised me is how much fun and energy the timer and the queue brings.”

To date, Waitroom has raised $3 million and its lead investor is Craft Ventures.

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