Metaverse has been one of the most trending topics for some time now. It even became more popular when Facebook was rebranded to Meta last year. Now, many industries are taking the initiative to link themselves to the Metaverse, giving people an entirely new experience, and the financial sector is no exception.
Below are some big financial brands getting into the metaverse to create new-age financial services.
While this bank initially started to facilitate trade between Latin America and the Port of Santander in Northern Spain in the late 1800s, it has shown tremendous growth in financial services and its general operations. Now, this bank is not only the largest one in Spain but also the fifth largest one in Europe when it comes to assets.
Banco Santander was obviously not left out in exploring and utilizing the Metaverse. Earlier this year, this major financial group announced its partnership with Oxentia Foundation to launch the “Santander X Global Challenge | Blockchain and Beyond.”
This global competition aimed to bring out startups and scale-ups using Blockchain technology to develop innovative and scalable solutions. The award ceremony took place live in the Decentraland Metaverse in a space designed by Polygonal Mind. Those who watched the award ceremony got a cap and bracelet that allowed them to customize their avatars during the event.
The six winners not only took home a cash prize but were also awarded access to Santander X 100 and an exclusive NFT created by Oxentia Foundation. This is just the beginning of Banco Santander making its mark in the Metaverse. We can only expect more from this leading financial group in this sector.
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
JPMorgan Chase & Co., one of the most prominent financial institutions in America and across the globe, has also made its mark in the Metaverse. Earlier this year, JPMorgan Chase & Co. announced that they were opening a “lounge” in the Decentraland Metaverse. This big step made them the first-ever bank to open a lounge in the Decentraland Metaverse.
According to JPMorgan Chase & Co., the Onyx lounge (named after the bank’s blockchain unit) aims to enable individuals to create their avatars, build virtual spaces, and tour the lounge.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. also pointed out that it is beginning to operate like a bank in the Metaverse, similar to how it works in the real world. The creation of the lounge has opened doors to more opportunities for JPMorgan Chase & Co. to explore the Metaverse.
HSBC Holdings PLC (the largest European bank) has dipped its toes into the Metaverse world. Recently, HSBC announced a partnership with Sandbox (an Ethereum-based platform) to introduce the bank into the Metaverse.
The bank purchased a virtual plot of land in the Sandbox Metaverse, intending to develop it into a stadium. HSBC stated that they wanted to develop that plot of virtual land to engage with e-sports, sports, and gaming fanatics.
And that’s not all; HBSC also announced early this year that it was launching a Metaverse Discretionary Strategy portfolio aiming to invest in five segments within the Metaverse ecosystem. These segments include virtualization, computing, infrastructure, interface, experience, and discovery.
The bank mentioned that the portfolio was being created for its high and ultra-high net worth investors in Singapore and Hong Kong.
BNP Paribas, the second largest bank in Europe and the ninth largest one globally, was also not left behind when it came to making a mark on the Metaverse.
This bank announced that it would launch a Virtual Reality(VR) app that will allow its customers to use VR in different banking transactions like opening a bank account.
BNP Paribas also started using VR as its new communications channel. So, the bank blended Virtual Reality with their other existing communication channels. For example, customers can now use VR to communicate with one of BNP Paribas’ bank representatives to book an appointment at a local branch.
Bank of America
Although this major banking institution in the United States hasn’t made its way into the Metaverse, it is preparing itself to do so.
Late last year, Bank of America became the first-ever financial institution in the US to launch a comprehensive Virtual Reality training program in about 4,300 financial centers countrywide.
According to Bank of America, the aim of this training was to allow their staff to engage in a series of tasks to imitate customer interaction through a virtual environment. This training is a big step for Bank of America as it has equipped its employees with skills that enable them to interact smoothly with clients in a virtual world.
Mastercard, the second largest payment network globally, has also jumped in on several opportunities in the Metaverse.
In June this year, Mastercard partnered with Decentraland (one of the leading Metaverse virtual worlds) to host a virtual Pride event for the LGBTQIA+ community. While this event didn’t involve any card payments or banking, Mastercard saw it as an opportunity to leave its mark on the Metaverse.
For starters, Mastercard wanted to show its support for the LGBTQIA+ community. Secondly, this payment network also saw it as an opportunity to explore the Metaverse.
So, the Pride event took place throughout the better part of June this year. It hosted conversations with LGBTQIA+ thought leaders, showcased LGBTQIA+ NFT wearables created by people from the community, and so much more.
The event also featured a Mastercard Pride Plaza that allowed people to experience virtual travel and a portal that allowed individuals to send letters to their younger selves.
Mastercard took advantage of the opportunity to enhance its reputation and dip its toes into the Metaverse.
Metaverse is gradually becoming the new normal for many industries, and the financial sector isn’t an exception. Many financial brands see this as an opportunity to extend their existing financial services in this new virtual world.