The fourth-biggest lender by assets in South Africa, Nedbank in a bid to establish its presence in the latest iteration of the internet, the metaverse, has acquired a village for itself in Ubuntuland.
Nedbank will be doing this in partnership with Africarare, a 3D virtual reality experience set in Ubuntuland. Africarare, which prides itself as the first metaverse on the continent and Ubuntuland creator is a platform that allows users buy, sell and rent property and other digital assets.
Nedbank, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Nedbank group is a renowned financial services group domiciled in South Africa that offers wholesale and retail banking services, in addition to insurance, asset management and wealth management, also operates in six other countries in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), with the synergy of subsidiaries and banks in Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe, as well as offices in Angola and Kenya.
Nedbank is also expanding its tentacles outside Africa with it having offices to provide international financial services for Africa-based clients in Guernsey, Isle of Man, Jersey, the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates.
The group’s executive for marketing and corporate affairs, Khensani Nobanda, in an emailed statement on Wednesday averred that Nedbank’s investment in the virtual-reality (VR) market was mooted to discover new marketing platforms and “creating experiences that go beyond banking”.
Continuing, he said: “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”.
According to Africarare, the Nedbank village will be laced with experiences ranging from virtual gaming to a sports lounge, having other early settlers including MTN, World Data Lab, and M&C Saatchi Abel.
According to a post on Africarare’s website, the villages ranges from 1×1, equivalent to a single plot of land, 24×24 equivalent to 576 plots, while noting that there are 204 642 plots of land available in Ubuntuland, whose currency is the $Ubuntu token that’s built on Ethereum blockchain.
Formerly known as the Nedcor Group before it was renamed on May 6, 2005 to the Nedbank Group, it acquired a 49.9 percent of Imperial Bank South Africa it did not own, implying that Nedbank now wholly owns Imperial Bank South Africa.
Nedbank in October 2014 acquired a 20 percent stake in Ecobank, and in the process converted its $285 million claim in Ecobank into equity.