A digital technology firm, Africarare, has announced plans for commercialisation of virtual land (Ubuntuland) that marries creativity, cryptocurrency and commerce in its metaverse.
The company, in a press statement on Tuesday, said interested parties can buy, sell and rent property and other digital assets in Ubuntuland.
“Firstly, virtual land will soon be available to purchase and develop, with MTN, Africa’s largest multinational mobile telecommunications company joining Africarare with an upcoming 12×12 village (144 plots of real estate) secured in Ubuntuland,” the statement read.
It said Africa’s first metaverse is set to unlock African creativity and connect Africa to the global digital economy.
Established in October 2021, Africarare, headquartered in South Africa, is the first South African metaverse to launch housing digital land with roots in the African continent.
According to the statement, the digital firm said there will only ever be 204, 642 plots of land available for trading in this space, and that it would be made up of different village sizes in various community hubs.
“The land is positioned and priced according to a tiered value system,” it said.
According to the statement, landholders will be able to customise their 3-D land spaces, such as hosting shops, producing resources, renting virtual services and developing games or other applications.
It said designated spaces will serve the community for work, play and wellness purposes, including state-of-the-art meeting rooms, online therapy rooms (with optional anonymity), concert stages, film festival spaces, meditation lounges and other dynamic interactive environments.
Also, the firm stated that renowned South African artist, Norman Catherine, has developed a unique collection of avatars for the metaverse, which will shortly be available to purchase.
It said the Normunda tribe is based on the artist’s signature lexicon that has fetched record prices in galleries around the world.
An avatar is a 3-D graphical representation of a user or the user’s character or persona in the space.
The firm said the currency in Ubuntuland will be the $UBUNTU token, and that it is built on the Ethereum blockchain and would be available later this year.
“Everything in Africarare can be bought, sold or traded using $UBUNTU tokens, including buying, developing, selling or renting plots or villages in Ubuntuland, and the in-world purchases of digital goods and services,” the statement read.
It said the valuation of the token will be calculated according to what users invest, build ,play and trade inside the metaverse.
The statement explained that two art galleries will feature in Africarare, and would be dedicated to showcasing Africa’s prolific creativity.
It noted that the Mila gallery (Swahili for ‘tradition’), which has already opened, will host curated collections by some of Africa’s foremost artists, while the Inuka gallery (Swahili for ‘rise’) will feature works by emerging African artists later this year.
“Both galleries will stage various exhibitions on an ongoing basis with art pieces being sold as NFT’s (non-fungible tokens),” the statement said.
In the Africarare marketplace, creators and developers can trade in-world assets such as land, avatars, avatar additions and other goods and services that are and will be available in Ubuntuland, the company said.
It said the marketplace will focus on four main areas: Art, Ubuntuland, Avatars & Skins and Digital Services, adding that users will also be able to trade on secondary platforms such as Opensea and others.
It explained that the Central Hub land area is reserved for Africarare custom made experiences, ranging from art to education, including experiences like galleries, live performances, stand-up comedy, video content channels, film festivals, safaris and more.
Mic Mann, Co-founder and CEO of Africarare was quoted to have said “Africarare will connect Africa to this booming arena of the global economy, stimulate growth and create multiple new jobs such as digital designers, creators and architects .”
Similarly, Shayne Mann, Co-founder of Africarare said the space will enable South African artists to showcase their talent to the world and monetize their distinctive creations.
“With Africarare being built on collaborative partnerships, the possibilities for commercialisation are endless,” the official said.
Bernice Samuels, MTN Group Executive, said it is an exciting moment for the company as it leads businesses on the continent to enter the metaverse marketplace.
“This is exactly what our Ambition 2025 strategy is premised on – leveraging trends that amplify consumer’s digital experiences and engagement,” he said.
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