Ever since Facebook Inc renamed itself to Meta, 'metaverse' has become a buzzword across the globe.
Though the concept of the metaverse is still in the nascent stage in India, its growing popularity has intrigued many entrepreneurs, many of whom are taking the first-mover advantage.
According to a report by Emergen Research, the global metaverse market reached $47.69 billion in 2020 and is estimated to register a revenue CAGR of 43.3 percent to $828.95 billion by 2028 during the forecast period. India is expected to play a pivotal role in the metaverse sector.
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are slowly becoming an intangible part of metaverses, which symbolise popular artwork and digital memorabilia. It is a claim of ownership for a special, non-interchangeable digital asset that is collected on a blockchain.
YourStory lists some innovative startups that are working to create metaverse landscapes in India:
Founded by Ranjit Kumar, BollyHeroes offers a "Bollyverse" where users can compose, act, and produce their own scripts and characters to launch community-driven films, games, shows, and animation.
Aligned with the Bollywood industry, BollyHeros has collaborated with production houses, music labels, brands, superstars, gaming studios, and animation organisations. Its investors include Paperboat Design Studios, Fantico, and Vistas Media Capital.
The platform offers three primary kinds of NFTs: Legend BFT, Hero NFT, and Real NFT. Every NFT owner is compensated with a revenue share, incentives, and exclusive access to new products. Other NFTs in the 'Bollyverse' incorporate ultra-rare NFTs through which users can generate their own characters. Additionally, '˜Bollybabies' enabled users to make something exclusive by merging and combining it with other NFTs.
Founded in 2021 by game developers Gaurav Gupta and Supreet Raju, OneRare is a Delhi-based startup that is creating the world's first-ever food metaverse, aka, '˜Foodverse'. It is building India's first play to earn, food metaverse game on the Polygon blockchain.
The goal of the platform is to introduce agriculture and food and beverage ventures to the rapidly developing Web3 platform, known as the metaverse.
OneRare also monetises digital art by letting users make their dishes as NFTs. It also enables users to construct a digitised marketplace with international buyers, celebrity chefs, and global food cultures, while at the same time, utilising its earnings from digital currencies to raise funds for the fight against world hunger.
Founded in 2021 by runner and athlete Sunny Makroo,is a Gurugram-based startup that is building 'the third format' of running by making a metaverse for runners. The startup aims to preserve all that is good about both the indoor and outdoor aspects of running, especially the physics and biology of running.
In an earlier conversation with YourStory, Sunny Makroo, Founder of Zippy, said, 'œWe are bringing the immersion, realism and social experience of outdoor running to the convenience and comfort of indoor running.'
Furthermore, he added, "Once a user has stepped on the treadmill, they will be "teleported" to a virtual world where the user can run across the major marathon cities (Boston, London, Mumbai, Tokyo) or scenic environments (jungle trail, beach run etc.), either with friends or solo via their digital twins or avatars."
Hyderabad-based NextMeet, founded in 2020 by Pushpak Kypuram, is an avatar-based immersive platform that facilitates virtual conferencing and networking in a 3D environment. It offers 3D spaces for meetings, virtual event platforms, learning, and working as a virtual experience for workers, participants, and students from all over the world to meet and socialise.
The platform is intended to remove isolation and UI fatigue from traditional remote work. The startup caters to the mass market in various segments like corporations, educational institutions, virtual events and shows, among others.
Founded in 2020 by Saurabh Gupta and Siddharth Swarnkar, Tamasha.live is an influencer-led live online gaming platform that enables new-age influencers and content creators to host games with real cash rewards for winners at the cost of a small entry fee.
In an earlier conversation with YourStory, Saurabh Gupta, Co-founder, Tamasha.live said, "Tamasha aims to disrupt the booming social gaming industry. We aim to give the new generation of content creators the power to entertain their fans through live games and also monetise it effectively in new and unique ways; and the backing of leading investors such as 9Unicorns will help us realise that vision."
In November 2020, the startup raised Rs 2.5 crore from 9Unicorns, Titan Capital, and FirstCheque to strengthen its team, build strong products, and increase its user base.
Edited by Kanishk Singh