Rizwan (“Riz”) Virk is a successful entrepreneur, investor, futurist, bestselling author, video game industry pioneer, and indie film producer. Riz received a B.S. in Computer Science from MIT, and a M.S. in Management from Stanford’s GSB. He is currently working on a PhD at ASU’s College of Global Futures, researching metaverse and virtual worlds, and a Faculty Associate at the Fulton School of Engineering teaching classes on entrepreneurship and the Metaverse.
Riz was the founder of Play Labs @ MIT, a startup accelerator held on campus at the MIT Game Lab. He also runs Bayview Labs and is a venture partner at Griffin Gaming Partners, one of the largest gaming VC funds and is an advisor to Ridge Ventures. Riz is an advisor to many startups, VC’s, educational institutions, blockchain organizations and private foundations.
Riz is a prolific Silicon Valley angel investor, having invested in many startups including Tapjoy, Telltale Games, Discord, Funzio (sold to GREE), Pocket Gems, Theta Labs, Upland and many others. His video games have included Tap Fish, Penny Dreadful: Demimonde and Grimm: Cards of Fate. Riz has produced many indie films (imdb link), including Thrive, Sirius, Knights of Badassdom, starring Peter Dinklage and Summer Glau, The CW’s The Outpost, as well as adaptations of the works of Philip K. Dick and Ursula K. Le Guin.
Riz’s books include Startup Myths & Models, The Simulation Hypothesis, Zen Entrepreneurship, and Treasure Hunt: Follow Your Inner Clues to Find True Success, and The Simulated Multiverse.
Riz and his writings has been featured extensively, including Inc. Magazine to Tech Crunch, Venture Beat, Vox.com, Digital Trends, NBC News.com, The Telegraph, BBC Science Focus, and Scientific American. He has been interviewed extensively ranging from The Daily Show with Jon Stewart to Inside Edition Digital, Coast to Coast AM, Fox News, CBC’s Tapestry, The History Channel and Gaia TV.
His interest and expertise ranges from startups/VC industry, video games/metaverse, blockchain/cryptocurrency, meditation/consciousness, simulation theory, UFOs/UAPs, the intersection of science, science fiction, religion and philosophy. His podcast, The Simulated Universe explores many of these issues at the edge of science and science fiction. His personal website is www.zenentrepreneur.com.