Facebook is entering the metaverse with its own project, as Mark Zuckerberg candidly announced that his social network will become “a metaverse company”. It appears more and more clear that being a set of interconnected posting, messaging and media-sharing experiences is not enough: the future belongs to creating a full meta-universe where all the experiences (and more) can be joined at once.

Facebook is not the only big player interested in the metaverse. UK-based WiSE Partners launched a metaverse-focused growth fund. A similar move has been performed by Marcy Venture Partners, co-fonded by non other than Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter.

A definition of Metaverse

If you are looking for investment opportunities in the metaverse sector, you might want to check out Nvidia, that produces semiconductros to run the complex calculations needed for the metaverse; or even directrly into some versions of the metaverse, like Roblox. It looks like a videogame, but actually this is a virtual, interactive community of almost 50 million people active daily. What is really interesting is the business model of the company, that profits from transaction happening in the virtual world – and that are performed using a virtual currency created by the company.

The point is that the metaverse is such a large and undefined system, that quantifying its overall dimensions is impossible. There is no single metaverse “standard”: take this map presented by Jon Radoff on Medium.com:

As you can see, this is like a digital primordial soup where everything is possible and nothing is real. Still, some tendencies appear to be clear even in this digital anarchy: the new interaction dynamics need to rely upon some technological development. The latest tendencies in venture investment can help us define what the industry feels it’s yet to be developed:

  • Music, sound & noise. French-American company Stage11 is working on “Reimagining music for the Metaverse”. This is not just about how to listen to music in the digi-verse, but also about creation. The metaverse opens up to new concepts of collaboration between artists and even to the generation of noise. We have to imagine this like the introduction of electricity in the traditional music world, that revolutionized an entire world with electric guitars, the hammond organ or even the theremin – but also home WI-FIs and amplification. Needless to say, creations can be then safeguarded as NFTs. Stage11 just raised 5.77 Mio USD in funding.
  • Gaming. As mentioned, Facebook is creating its metaverse. A few days ago it also announced the launch of a 10 Mio USD fund for developers interested in creating games for the Facebook metaverse to be. Surprisingly enough, Forbes commented this news by claiming it is just a “distraction” to relieve attention from the claims of former FB employee Frances Haugen.
  • Workspaces. One of the long-term consequences of the pandemic is that those large office spaces are a thing of the past. Supposedly, we will go to offices only when we have to meet someone in person – and the rest of the productive solo work can be performed at home. Still, the metaverse wants to target also the area and move also meetings to the virtual space. See startup Sophya, that recently raised 15 Mio USD to develop SoWork, a digital coworking environment.
  • Events. Company Party.space raised 1 Mio USD to develop its virtual-events business. Startup Welcome raised 12 Mio USD to create jaw-dropping “virtual and hybrid events“.

Still, this is just a brief list of what is brewing in the metaverse. Any situation concerning creation and living will be impacted and reformed. Moreover, commercial structures appear to be much clearer than the web, because access to the metaverses will be controlled and strictly regulated by proprietary cryptos. The presence of big players together with independents makes a fact clear: this is a unique time of innovation, possibly as large as the first internet revolution.