The pandemic has forced many gyms to close and emptied others, catapulting the at-home fitness industry.

Zwift, a social fitness application that lets users virtually train together on their treadmills and bikes, is taking advantage of the shift.

The Long Beach-based company announced Wednesday it raised $450 million to build out Zwift-branded "hardware' for fitness buffs that uses the company's 3-D generated worlds to ride or run alongside others. It's also looking to expand into esports as it builds out the 10 virtual worlds it offers in the platform. In the summer, Zwift hosted a virtual Tour de France in July.

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Techstars Starburst Space Accelerator's latest class announced partnerships with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Maxar Technologies and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) North America, among others, at Wednesday's long-awaited showcase. It was the culmination of months of focused and sometimes grueling remote work.

The program aims to help companies achieve several years of commercial growth within three months, with mentorship from the accelerator's partners, including the U.S. Air Force, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Lockheed Martin, Israel Aerospace Industries North American (IAI), SAIC and Maxar Technology.

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It's been a strange summer for the Techstars Starburst Space Accelerator.

One team of founders in Singapore worked through the night on Los Angeles time to create an AI system for data. Another in Wisconsin kept each other's stoke strong while working remotely these last grueling weeks on their virtual reality (VR) platform. A third team was able to participate in the program because the pandemic let them work remotely next to their near-space balloon in Colorado.

They're all part of the second class to participate in the accelerator's mentorship-driven program that aims help build the next generation of space technology companies. The program is usually based in Los Angeles.

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