DBS announced today (September 9) that it has partnered The Sandbox — a decentralised gaming virtual world and a subsidiary of Animoca Brands — to create DBS BetterWorld.
It is an interactive metaverse experience showcasing the importance of building a better, more sustainable world, and inviting others to come alongside.
The partnership makes DBS the first company in Singapore to seal a partnership with The Sandbox and the first bank in Singapore to make a foray into the metaverse. This also marks a new milestone in DBS’ journey to continually explore the potential of Web 3.0 opportunities to benefit its customers and the broader community.
Under the partnership, DBS will acquire a 3×3 plot of LAND — a unit of virtual real estate in The Sandbox metaverse — which will be developed with immersive elements.
Piyush Gupta, CEO of DBS, observed that the finance industry has been largely catalysed by digital advancements. Metaverse technology in particular, while still evolving, could fundamentally change the way banks interact with customers and communities.
Given the speed of change, experimenting and learning-by-doing enable us to best test the potential of various technologies. Our partnership with The Sandbox and Animoca Brands marks the start of an exciting collaboration as we push the boundaries of what is possible in the metaverse. We also look forward to harnessing it as an additional innovative platform to spread the word on important ESG issues and to shine a spotlight on communities and partners doing good work to address them.
– Piyush Gupta, CEO of DBS
Sebastian Paredes, CEO of DBS Hong Kong, added that the metaverse presents exciting opportunities to redefine how we live, work and engage with one another.
“We have been getting our feet wet in this space, and our very own young technologists have been given the freedom to develop experimental concepts in the metaverse.”
“With today’s partnership, we have an excellent opportunity for our young talent to be deeply involved in developing a compelling and meaningful use case in The Sandbox. This also contributes to our ongoing efforts to groom the next generation of tech talent who will eventually lead DBS in tapping new and emerging technologies to usher in the future of banking.”
Championing sustainability causes
The bank aims for DBS BetterWorld to be an additional engagement platform as it continues to advance sustainability causes by providing an avenue for visitors to The Sandbox to learn more about prevailing ESG concerns.
For instance, DBS will use the platform to profile social entrepreneurs in Asia who have been driving positive impact through innovative business models. Since 2014, DBS and the DBSF have helped over 800 social enterprises across the region scale their businesses and awarded over S$10 million in grants to close to 100 social enterprises.
Additionally, DBS will work with partners and collaborators from the Government, community, business, and technology sectors to develop meaningful concepts to enrich the DBS BetterWorld experience.
DBS will also explore opportunities to showcase DBS BetterWorld with LiveBetter, a one-stop digital platform that the bank launched in October 2021 to encourage more eco-conscious living among its customers.
Through LiveBetter, the bank’s customers can easily access a suite of tools to help make the shift towards a more sustainable way of life, including handy eco-friendly tips, channels to donate to sustainability causes, as well as investment opportunities in sustainability-themed funds.
DBS will partner The Sandbox to purchase carbon offsets such that the land and production on DBS BetterWorld will be carbon neutral.
“ESG issues are important to us, and we look forward to collaborating on an experience that invites our audience to make a positive global impact, to discover the creative possibilities of our platform, and maybe to find their next life-changing opportunity in the metaverse,” said Sebastien Borget, COO and co-founder of The Sandbox.
Featured Image Credit: DBS Bank