RANCHO CORDOVA, Calif.—VSP Global has announced a $2 million investment with Vizzario Inc., a California-based startup, to develop eyecare technologies to track visual acuity, eye strain, traumatic brain injury and sports vision performance.

“New technologies and product offerings are poised to create unprecedented opportunities to expand access to eyecare services. Our partnership with Vizzario captures that spirit and will explore new pathways to fuse their technology with our research efforts,” said VSP Global CEO Jim McGrann.

At its core, Vizzario operates what it describes as a “sensory data exchange platform.” That platform allows for value creation around data generated from technologies, including smart devices, wearables, eye-tracking tools, electroencephalogram (EEG) systems, virtual reality and augmented reality via head-mounted displays. Vizzario then utilizes advancements in machine learning, computer vision and deep learning techniques to help monitor and predict health outcomes through the analysis of an individual’s data.

The partnership was fostered through an ongoing relationship with VSP Global’s innovation lab, The Shop, and joins a number of technology-driven alignments the lab has developed with academic institutions such as the University of Southern California’s Center for Body Computing.

Founded in 2014, Vizzario is led by CEO Khizer Khaderi, MD, who established the Sports Vision Lab at the University of California, Davis and formerly served as the director of Neuro-Ophthalmology at the UC Davis Eye Center. Sample applications include the ability to track the effects of digital eye strain over a period of time or to screen for traumatic brain injury in contact sports, such as football, by measuring key areas of the eye-brain connection.

“We’re excited to partner with VSP Global and explore a number of meaningful pathways to bring Vizzario’s technology to life,” said Dr. Khaderi. “Vizzario is rooted in vision, but the platform is capable of taking in a number of other data sets that can start to enrich the understanding of a person’s lifestyle and habits.”

Research and development is underway inside The Shop to leverage the Vizzario technology through a number of cutting-edge applications. Early areas of interest include synching with EEG bands to track eye movement against electrodes in the brain as well as game-based applications designed to create vision benchmarks and, ultimately, help improve visual acuity over time.

“What we’re building here is the foundation of Contextual Health, which for VSP Global starts to fulfill a broader interest in enriching and personalizing traditional medical records with context from daily living,” said McGrann.

As timelines are established over the next few months and product pathways more clearly defined, VSP Global said it will entertain the option for an additional $1 million investment with Vizzario in June. As part of the partnership agreement, VSP Optics Group president Don Oakley has also been appointed to Vizzario’s board of directors.

Both companies expect to have a consumer-facing offering ready to unveil later in the year.