Cornwall company breaks into us market with accessible 3D tours

  • The company’s export sales to the US are forecast at 1 million over the next five years. 
  • Exports now account for 39% of its overall revenue in 2021. 
  • DIT has supported the company to grow in the US through market research support, advice on regulatory requirements and virtual trade missions. 

A Cornwall-based company which creates 3D tours for industries including education, transportation and health has established itself in the US market with support from the Department for International Trade (DIT) as part of the drive to level up businesses in the region. 

The business expects to generate sales of £1 million to the US over the next five years, with exports now accounting for 39% of the company’s total revenue.  

Ocean 3D based in Penzance was established in 2018 by Chris Wood and Rosalind Osborne after they identified a gap in the market for organisations to produce 3D tours to help people who suffer with autism and other mental health conditions. The tours allow people to experience spaces before visiting them, thereby reducing anxiety surrounding navigation or accessibility.  

The company was the first business in the world without a physical premise to be awarded the National Autistic Society ‘Autism Friendly’ Award. The benefits of virtual reality have been shown in research1 published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders which found that immersive virtual reality can help improve autism phobias.  

With DIT’s support, the company has signed its first deal with an airport in Texas this year. DIT has provided market research support and has given the company the opportunity to attend a virtual trade mission to the US as part of DIT’s Tech 4 Good programme.  

Chris said: 

“DIT has helped to get us in touch with the right people to get presidential exemptions lifted while ensuring we have the right paperwork.  

“DIT is now supporting us to identify regions of the US where we should be focusing our efforts through providing useful market data. 

“The best advice I can offer to companies is to get in touch with DIT as they’ve been brilliant in supporting us to grow overseas. We wouldn’t have been able to do it without them.” 

The US is the UK’s largest single trading partner, with total trade reaching over £196bn in 2020, and over 1.4 million people in the UK working for US companies.  

In 2019, the UK and US had more than £760bn invested in each other’s economies, creating high-skilled jobs and supporting our communities.  

The Department for International Trade has made good progress in recent months, ending the ban on British beef, drawing a line under the Airbus-Boeing dispute, and co-operating on vital areas like technology.  

Paul Shand, Head of Trade for DIT in the South West said: 

“Ocean 3D’s success in the US demonstrates the strong demand for high-quality UK services overseas. It’s great to see them thriving and helping people with accessibility needs across the world to navigate public and private spaces. 

“Trade will play an important role in getting our economy back on track and Ocean 3D is a great example of how companies can look to lucrative overseas markets to boost their sales whilst creating more jobs.”   For further information: website.