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The Sandbox generated funds from a funding round led by SoftBank to expand its NFT and metaverse offerings beyond gaming.
Metaverse gaming platform The Sandbox, has raised $93 million in a funding round led by the SoftBank Vision Fund 2, according to Reuters. The latest funding round reflects The Sandbox’s accelerated growth in monthly active users, and transaction volume which surpassed $144 million. Furthermore, the fundraising is happening just over a year after the last one took place. Although The Sandbox declined to disclose its valuation, its native crypto Sandbox coin (SAND) has a market cap of approximately $2 billion. Furthermore, the company said it currently owns about 22% of the coins.
Meanwhile, Vision 2’s involvement signals the first time it is investing in a company that issues its own digital currencies. Although, SoftBank has already played leading roles in funding rounds for NFT-oriented companies this year. This effort by the Japanese multinational holding company might be to partake in the ongoing NFT boom. Some of its other recent notable investments include Candy Digital, a sports NFT startup, and Sorare, a French-based NFT fantasy soccer game.
Sebastien Borget, chief operating officer and co-founder of The Sandbox weighed in on the funding round and potential benefits. He said:
“We are creating this open metaverse. We are positioning the Sandbox against those giant tech companies who are claiming the metaverse to be theirs, offering an alternative where users are first.”
According to Borget, the investment realized will back the growth of The Sandbox creators’ economy beyond gaming into other realms. These include fashion, architecture, as well as virtual concerts.
The Sandbox Before Softbank
Sandbox allows players to build, own and monetize their virtual gaming experiences on the Ethereum blockchain. In addition, the virtual Metaverse platform grants creators ownership via NFTs, and provides tools for asset creation within its realm. The Sandbox has also been building its brand visibility with the help of other businesses and celebrities. For instance, rap icon Snoop Dogg inked a deal to create a digital replica of his mansion within The Sandbox’s metaverse.
The price of The Sandbox coin spiked by over 200% after social media behemoth Facebook announced a name change to Meta Platforms Inc last week. This subsequently led to a surge in investor interest in companies specializing in building metaverse gaming experiences. The concept of the metaverse is a shared virtual platform within which people can move through digital spaces, and access via different devices.
Hong Kong-based gaming software and venture capital company Animoca Brands owns a majority stake in The Sandbox. Back in July, Animoca Brands raised almost $139 million in a funding round geared towards financing a slew of initiatives. Announced plans were new products, investments and acquisitions, and intellectual property licenses. Furthermore, the fundraising was led by Coinbase Ventures – the investment arm of the popular crypto exchange Coinbase. According to Animoca, it conducted the round at a pre-money valuation of $1 billion.
Animoca provides digital property rights through NFTs and blockchain tech.