Artificial IntelligenceCryptocurrencyMetaverseCybersecurityTech Forward

HSBC is starting an exclusive metaverse fund just for high net worth clients

April 6, 2022, 5:31 PM UTC

HSBC just launched a fund focusing on the metaverse for its super wealthy, private banking clients in Hong Kong and Singapore, joining a growing list of major banks trying to cash in on the space. 

Dubbed the Metaverse Discretionary Strategy portfolio, the fund is managed by HSBC Asset Management, and will focus on metaverse infrastructure, computing, virtualisation, experience and discovery, and interface, HSBC told Fortune in a statement.

The bank hopes to capitalize on the metaverse’s major growth potential, adding that the “metaverse is expected to become the next iteration of the internet.”

This is HSBC’s most substantial foray in the metaverse, but not its first. Last month, the bank said it would buy a plot of virtual land on a metaverse platform called The Sandbox. 

The metaverse includes a multitude of virtual worlds where users can represent themselves digitally as avatars, buy in-game items, socialize with others and even own land. 

HSBC’s latest moves follow a recent trend among banking giants to invest in Web3 technology. On March 31, Citibank issued a report claiming that the market for the metaverse could represent an $8 trillion to $13 trillion opportunity by 2030. 

“We believe the Metaverse is the next generation of the internet — combining the physical and digital world in a persistent and immersive manner — and not purely a Virtual Reality world,” Citi wrote in its report. 

And in February, JPMorgan Chase also entered the metaverse with a virtual lounge in Decentraland. The lounge included a spiral staircase, a tiger, and a portrait of CEO Jamie Dimon. JPMorgan also released a report that month stating that the metaverse has a market opportunity of an estimated $1 trillion in yearly revenue.

“The metaverse ecosystem, while still at its early stage, is rapidly evolving,” Lina Lim, regional head of Asia Pacific discretionary and funds for investments and wealth solutions at HSBC, noted in the statement. “We see many exciting opportunities in this space as companies of different backgrounds and sizes are flocking into the ecosystem.”

April 7, 2021: This story has been updated with a statement from HSBC

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