LONDON and HONG KONG —The Sandbox is a growing decentralized gaming virtual world and subsidiary of Animoca Brands, partnered with HSBC, one of the world’s largest banks and financial services providers.
This partnership opens doors for virtual communities across the globe to engage with global financial services providers and sports communities.
CEO and Co-founder of The Sandbox Sebastian Borget shared, “we’re pleased to see large, trusted institutions such as HSBC join The Sandbox open metaverse and embrace the culture of Web3, connecting with users through entertainment, gaming, and user-generated content. We believe this is the beginning of broader adoption of Web3 and the metaverse by institutions driving brand experiences and engagement within this new ecosystem.”
The Sandbox is one of the decentralized virtual worlds behind the recently growing demand for virtual real estate, partnering with major IPs and brands such as Adidas, Snoop Dogg, The Walking Dead, Deadmau5, Atari, Rollercoaster Tycoon, Care Bears, The Smurfs, and many others.
By leveraging the existing The Sandbox IP, which has more than 40 million global installs on mobile according to Animoca Brands, The Sandbox metaverse offers creators and players a decentralized and intuitive platform to create immersive 3D worlds game experiences and securely store, share, and monetize their work.
“The groundbreaking partnership between The Sandbox and HSBC will see the global financial services provider acquire a plot of LAND, virtual real estate in The Sandbox metaverse, which will be developed to engage and connect with sports, esports, and gaming enthusiasts,” according to their parent company Animoca Brands.
Several metaverse virtual worlds are built on blockchain technology, which offers users interactive and immersive experiences.
According to PWC, the global metaverse market estimates to grow from $45.4 billion in 2019 to $1.5 trillion in 2030.
This agreement paves the way for other international institutions to innovate in Web3 as consumer adoption demands more robust experiences in the hybrid metaverse through decentralized and gamified models.
“The metaverse is how people will experience Web3, the next generation of the Internet — using immersive technologies like augmented reality, virtual reality, and extended reality. At HSBC, we see great potential to create new experiences through emerging platforms, opening up a world of opportunity for our current and future customers and for the communities we serve. Through our partnership with The Sandbox, we are making our foray into the metaverse, allowing us to create innovative brand experiences for new and existing customers. We’re excited to be working with our sports partners, brand ambassadors, and Animoca Brands to co-create experiences that are educational, inclusive, and accessible.” according to Suresh Balaji, Chief Marketing Officer, Asia-Pacific HSBC.
What will be the impact on consumer engagement?
Speaking to Stephane Koch, co-founder of Shappy, a Software Development company helping brands partner with brands to create consumer experiences across the metaverse, he explains that there will be some long-term implications.
“HSBC stepping into the metaverse shows how brands can reach new audiences through innovative experiences and how we might consume financial services in the future. Every industry will have to rethink customer engagement and how it could build immersive 3-D experiences across the virtual platforms where their customers are.”
As for The Sandbox, they are already thinking about expanding on this:
Helen Femi Williams is a freelance journalist and podcaster interested in fintech, politics, economics, and their intersections.
She is the host of the letsgetlitical podcast, a fortnightly show interviewing guests from all different sides of the political spectrum, in partnership with the Mozilla Foundation.
Prior to this role, she worked as an innovation consultant developing insurtech and fintech products and ideas for brands, startups, and major corporations.
She studied International Relations at the University of Nottingham (UK and Malaysia).