On Wednesday, the Hong Kong-based banking network HSBC announced its partnership with The Sandbox metaverse. The partnership intends to explore the possibilities of virtual communities across the world in expanding the bank’s businesses. The LAND bought on The Sandbox will accommodate and give access to the sports, eSports, and gaming communities from around the world. This new decision by the group comes as an attempt to bring an innovative and interactive experience to users to sustain the business amidst increasing competition.
The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited is one of the largest banking networks based in Asia. Established in 1865, this historical organization has expanded its business to more than 64 countries now. The bank is currently responsible for managing and transacting assets worth 2,958 billion in USD value. The banking network has officially entered the DeFi sector with its recent purchase of LAND in The Sandbox metaverse. Reportedly, this new venture is expected to be an experiment in the decentralized and gamified experience of the metaverse in aiding the bank’s businesses.
For those unfamiliar with the project, The Sandbox is a decentralized 3D virtual world that helps players to explore various opportunities of DeFi. This virtual world is gamified, where users can monetize their gaming abilities and assets acquired during the games. The Sandbox metaverse also has its native SAND token, a cryptocurrency that helps with the in-game economy. The SAND coin is currently worth well over $3 in the crypto market. Moreover, users in this metaverse are allowed to buy virtual real estate known as LAND to build their own customized space. As metaverse projects are on the rise, many companies across the world are building their projects on these NFT-powered LANDs.
The HSBC group has become the most recent addition to the list of The Sandbox’s partners, which currently has more than 200 companies. The LAND acquired by HSBC will have an exclusive infrastructure for gaming, sports, and eSports communities. This small step potentially opens the door for this giant banking network to adopt web3’s advantages in its future ventures. According to Suresh Balaji, CMO at HSBC, Asia-Pacific, this deal with The Sandbox will be a stepping stone for the group to enter other areas like augmented reality, extended reality, and other immersive technologies of web3 to open up a “world of opportunities for its current and future customers.”
The remarkable shift here is that international financial institutions consider decentralization and gamification as “robust and innovative” avenues for their businesses. The metaverse market was worth more than 45 billion dollars in 2019. Now, the market is predicted to cross 1.5 trillion by 2030. Such growth would dwarf its current value by a large margin. As the Metaverse finds partners in firms and brands like Gucci, Ubisoft, Warner Music Group, The Walking Dead, Snoop Dog, and more, The Sandbox is highly likely to have a large chunk of this market.