Grayscale is one of the major players in the crypto sector and one of the market leaders in investing in crypto assets. The founder of the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust Fund (GBTF), the first Bitcoin investment fund on the market, is also interested in the meta-verse and created with this in mind the Grayscale Decentraland Trust. The latter currently has $ 90 million in assets under management and has gained nearly 1807% since inception. In a document, the company assessed how the meta-verse could revolutionize the “business model” of technology companies and the opportunities it offers them.
What economic model for the metaverse?
Metaversen is currently only in the early stages of development. But large technology companies (like Facebookwho recently chose the name Meta) did not fail to notice the paradigm shift that web 3.0 will bring to this industry, in the form of a new decentralized internet economy, in the center of which the user is, and which connects both the physical and digital worlds. The authors state that the transformation of web communities to date has taken place according to the three phases below, with one representative actor for each era:
- Web 1.0: Netscape allowed users to connect online;
- Web 2.0: Facebook allowed users to connect to online communities;
- Web 3.0: Decentraland connects users to a community-owned virtual world.
The shift to Web 3.0 is remarkable for the creation of crypto-metavers, democratically owned and controlled by users, a development that is now possible thanks to NFTs. These tokens allow users to have ownership of a digital asset and to exchange it with others without having to go through a centralized entity.
Early Web 3.0 metavers were typically built on Layer 1 blockchain platforms, with input from a wealth of game design players and game elements that can be traded freely on blockchain.
What is Grayscale’s revenue forecast?
The gaming sector is where the transition to this creative economy happens naturally. According to Grayscale estimates, gaming revenue could grow from $ 180 billion in 2020 to $ 400 billion in 2025. The growing revenue generation of games is one of the key factors behind this dynamic, while “play-to-earn” is becoming increasingly popular. “Gamers” actually abandon paid games in favor of free games, which developers monetize through the sale of digital game objects. Grayscale estimates that the value of goods sold on the metaverse reached $ 200 million.
However, the possibilities that metaverse offers go far beyond games. The total capitalization of the network based on metaverse is currently estimated at $ 27.5 billion: this amount may seem insignificant compared to the market value of Facebook ($ 900 billion) or even compared to the entire gaming industry ($ 2 trillion), but these figures represents an indicator of revenue opportunities for leading companies in today’s Web 2.0-based ecosystem. Of course, the transition of these companies to this new model will not be easy, and it is likely that some of them will resist the idea of opening up their ecosystems and removing barriers to access to other market players.
Metaversen is ready to gradually transform our social interactions, our business transactions and the internet economy. Facebook’s involvement in the design of the metaverse could serve as an accelerator for its development. But Facebook’s strategic focal point raises a new question: should the meta-verse be open and decentralized, or should it be closed and corporate?
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