Africa’s 5th Largest Bank Leads Metaverse Race with a Plot in Ubuntuland

By September 21, 2022The Sandbox
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Quick take:

  • Nedbank has become the first financial institution in Africa to join the metaverse race.
  • The South African bank has collaborated with Africarare to acquire a 12X12 digital in Ubuntuland.
  • The move is part of Nedbank’s strategy to lead the digital race by leveraging new technology to discover new marketing channels.

Nedbank has bought a 12X12 plot of land in Ubuntuland. The South African banking giant has teamed up with Africarare to make its first foray into web3. Nedbank is the 5th largest bank in Africa, and the first financial institution from the continent to join the metaverse race.

Nedbank said the digital plot is part of its digital strategy that leverages emerging technologies to discover new marketing opportunities. The company will create Nedbank Village, a metaverse hub for enhancing customer value and services with numerous experiences including virtual gaming and a sports lounge, among others.

While Nedbank leads other African banks in the race to the metaverse, it falls down the list looking at things from a global perspective.

Asian banking giant DBS Bank has partnered with The Sandbox to launch metaverse experiences, while in March HSBC announced a joint partnership with the same metaverse platform in a bid to connect with sports and gaming enthusiasts. The company also announced the launch of a metaverse fund focused on rich Asian clients in April.

Other global financial services companies that have forayed into the metaverse include JP Morgan, which became the first bank to open a virtual lounge in the metaverse in February, while Fidelity Investment launched metaverse experiences to onboard young investors. The company had previously launched a thematic metaverse ETF.

Africarare is a web3 company focused on unlocking the African potential to the world by taking advantage of the latest advances in the digital economy. Its metaverse platform Ubuntuland currently hosts some of the leading companies in the continent including MTN, World Data Lab, and M&C Saatchi Abel.

Commenting on his company’s foray into the metaverse, Khensani Nobanda, group executive for marketing and corporate affairs at Nedbank group said banking institution has always focused on creating experiences that go beyond banking.

“Our entry into the metaverse is not merely about having a presence in this space, it’s about meeting the needs of our clients on platforms that resonate with them while offering an array of touchpoints that continue to demonstrate our commitment to lead in digital,” added Nobanda.

On the other hand, Mic Mann, co-founder and chief executive officer of Africarare commented: “We are thrilled to welcome Nedbank into Ubuntuland and look forward to creating positive change with them. By entering the metaverse, this organisation will pave the way for new solutions for Africa and play a role in the future of banking in this exciting world.”

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