SoftBank Vision Fund 2 Leads Fundraising Round with Animoca Brands, True Global Ventures, Liberty City Ventures, Galaxy Interactive, and Other Investors Joining Round to Support The Sandbox’s NFT-Based Entertainment Metaverse

TL;DR:

  • The Sandbox has raised $93M in a Series B round led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2, the first investment into crypto assets by SoftBank Vision Fund 2
  • The Sandbox is going to accelerate the development of its open metaverse, supporting more creators and involving more brands and IPs
  • The Sandbox has seen significant growth in 2021: it has over 500,000 registered wallets and 12,000 unique virtual LAND owners, and generated over US$144M in lifetime GMV
  • The Sandbox creator’s economy is expanding rapidly, creating new categories of digital jobs such as NFT creators, virtual architects, game makers, and more
  • The Sandbox’s vision to turn players into creators and push for a player-owned economy is expanding beyond gaming into fashion, architecture, virtual concerts, virtual shows, art galleries, museums, and more—developing a whole ecosystem and digital opportunities

HONG KONG – 2 November 2021 – The Sandbox, a subsidiary of Animoca Brands and the leading open NFT metaverse platform, announced today it has secured US$93M in its Series B fundraising round led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2, representing the fund’s first investment in crypto assets. The investment will enable The Sandbox team to scale the platform’s growth as a prime entertainment destination where brands, IPs, and celebrities can engage with their fans through virtual experiences including games, live performances, and social experiences.  

Other investors in the round included Animoca Brands, True Global Ventures, Liberty City Ventures, Galaxy Interactive, Kingsway Capital, Blue Pool Capital, LG Technology Ventures, Alpaca VC, Graticule Asset Management Asia, Com2uS, executives at GoldenTree Asset Management, Nokota, Sun Hung Kai & Co, Sound Ventures, Red Beard Ventures, SCB 10X, Polygon Studios, Samsung Next, Double Down Partners, StakeFish, SterlingVC, and HodlCo. Wedbush Securities acted as exclusive placement agent and financial advisor for The Sandbox, and Rubicon Law provided legal counsel to The Sandbox

Additionally, The Sandbox has added the following luminaries to its advisory team: Guy Oseary, founder of the management firm Maverick, whose clients include Madonna, U2, and Bored Ape Yacht Club; Nicholas Adler, manager and brand curator of entertainment icon, Snoop Dogg; Thomas Vu, former Executive Producer and Head of Franchise and Creative at Riot Games; and Mathieu Nouzareth, co-founder of FreshPlanet and creator of SongPop.

The Sandbox experienced tremendous growth in 2021. The Sandbox has generated over US$144M in GMV to date and over 500,000 users now have a connected wallet. Over 165 brands—including Snoop Dogg, The Walking Dead, The Smurfs, Care Bears, Atari, and CryptoKitties—have already formed IP partnerships to create voxelized versions of their worlds and characters in the metaverse. High profile LAND owners in The Sandbox include Zed Run, Republic Realm, Binance, Bored Ape Yacht Club, CyberKongz, CoinMarketCap, Metakovan, Pranksy, GrowYourBase, MetaKey, South China Morning Post, Zepeto, Socios, the Winklevoss twins, Bill Lee of Craft Ventures, and more.

“This investment round led by Softbank Vision Fund 2 will help scale up our growth strategy, operations, and player acquisition in The Sandbox ecosystem while sending a clear statement that the world’s most innovative fund believes in Web3 and decentralization as the next major trend,” said Sebastien BORGET, COO and Co-Founder of The Sandbox. “Adding new strategic partners such as Liberty City Ventures and Galaxy Interactive will also benefit The Sandbox’s global reach and expand the network of brands, IPs, and gaming studios interested in entering an open metaverse focused on a player-owned economy and user-generated content.”

“This investment will help fuel the growth of The Sandbox creators’ economy as we expand beyond gaming into fashion, architecture, virtual concerts and shows, art galleries, museums, and more,” said Arthur Madrid, CEO and Co-Founder of The Sandbox. “We are developing an entire ecosystem that opens new digital job opportunities for players and creators in our open NFT metaverse.”

NFTs are changing the way we live, work, create, play, and earn in virtual worlds, empowering players and creating value—and new jobs—in the metaverse. In this era of new possibilities, The Sandbox is emerging as the main NFT-based, open metaverse, where the content, economy, and even governance will be in the hands of the players, creators, and users who contribute to this virtual world.

In The Sandbox, players will be able to use the play-to-earn model to monetize time spent in the metaverse. Play-to-earn creates a circular economy with supply and demand where the resources collected by one category of the players are sold and purchased by another category of player or creator, rewarding participants for their time.

“We believe The Sandbox is constructing an open metaverse, unlocking new economic opportunities by empowering people to build and monetize their creations, from avatars and buildings to games and collectables,” said Aaron Wong, Investor at SoftBank Investment Advisers. “Leveraging blockchain technology and decentralized governance, the company is putting the power and control in the hands of its users, resulting in a thriving global community. We’re excited to partner with Arthur, Sebastien, and the team as they continue to transform what it means to have true digital ownership.”

One of the unique aspects of The Sandbox is that it is not just a gallery of games. Instead, it is a virtual world with a topographical layout that you can explore using your 3D avatar. As you walk to the border of one LAND, you can walk into an adjoining LAND. This makes the location of a game experience very similar to real-world real estate: your location and who your neighbours are become nearly as important as the quality of the entertainment experience. 

The Sandbox Virtual Real Estate Map (October 2021)

Some of the largest LAND Owners and Partners of The Sandbox:

The Sandbox is creating an Open Metaverse:

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