Standard Chartered Bank Hong Kong is now on the Metaverse

Standard Chartered Bank Hong Kong is Now on the Metaverse

Lara Raven

Lara Raven

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In what seems to be yet another bank entering the metaverse space, Standard Chartered Bank Hong Kong (SCBHK) announced a few weeks ago that it would create metaverse experiences for its clients.

The British multinational banking company tied up with The Sandbox to create a virtual banking experience for its customers.

The bank purportedly acquired valuable metaverse real estate at Sandbox’s Mega City.

The Mega City district is inspired by talented individuals from Hong Kong, where the bank is originally based. 

What Does SCBHK Expect to Do on the Metaverse?

SCBHK expects to use its virtual real estate to enhance customer experiences and encourage local art communities and sports groups to find larger audiences.

This will be enabled with the help of Sandbox’s Mega City district. The entire project is expected to be overseen by SC Ventures, a part of Standard Chartered Group.

SC Ventures is often responsible for creating innovative experiences and actively engaging with clients and partners even outside the metaverse.

Thus, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that this project will be maneuvered by SC Ventures. 

The bank still does not have a clear idea of how it will use its metaverse space.

At the moment, SCBHK and SC Ventures are actively looking for co-creation possibilities on the metaverse.

It is not clear if the two related entities will rope in a third party to enhance the metaverse offerings.

It should be noted that SC Ventures has long been known to invest in disruptive financial technology, and has been at the forefront of bringing alternative business models to Standard Chartered Bank. 

Why the Metaverse is So Attractive to Banking and Financial Institutions

Banks have been increasingly venturing into the metaverse for several reasons.

To begin with, the metaverse is seen as a possible platform to reach out to new customers, and offer better service.

Secondly, many banks wish to be the first ones to enter the virtual space, before others get on board.

For instance, HSBC and JP Morgan have both entered the metaverse already, and are looking at diversifying their virtual offerings.

The response has been quite encouraging too. Most people who have used these banks’ virtual spaces reveal that they feel the banking services are more accessible now. 

What are the Problems that Banks Currently Face on the Metaverse?

There are many problems plaguing the banking sector in the metaverse. Firstly, there is the question of security.

Although most banks are yet to conduct any real transactions online, they fear data leaks and threats to consumer privacy.

There could also be regulatory issues when it comes to data protection on the metaverse, an area that is less explored. 

In addition, banks have suffered from confusion regarding cryptocurrency, which sometimes is supported by governments while discouraged at other times.

Until and unless regulatory bodies in each country come up with ideas to mitigate risks and ensure safe financial transactions in the metaverse, metaverse banking will be a shaky prospect. 

This is probably one of the reasons why banks like Standard Chartered are taking it easy.

They have begun to invest in metaverse land but they haven’t begun to conduct any sort of transactions.

Instead, they have chosen to introduce themselves to their audiences in a safe and approachable manner by supporting local artists and sportsmen.

This seems like a conservative but rational approach for banks to make their presence felt in the metaverse initially. 

Banks are Playing it Safe

Standard Chartered Bank Hong Kong (SCBHK) is one of the few banks that are currently on the metaverse.

As there are privacy and regulatory issues at the moment, most banks that have entered the metaverse are playing it safe.

They have invested in real estate and trying to engage virtual communities while refraining from conducting actual crypto transactions. It remains to be seen how these trends will pan out shortly. 

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