It all started with Asia’s first wedding in the metaverse. Then the first Bollywood characters appeared on the platform. The first Holi party followed soon thereafter in the virtual reality world. And then the metaverse became an important space existing parallelly to the real world.
When Tamil Nadu couple Dinesh SP and Janaganandhini Ramaswamy approached the no-code non-fungible token (NFT) platform GuardianLink to plan their wedding on metaverse, they were on their path to create history. GuardianLink’s co-founder and CEO Ramkumar Subramaniam says that after they successfully executed the wedding, they have been getting a lot of offers for putting together such events on the metaverse.
The wedding opened the gate to a universe of opportunities for events to be planned on metaverse. In March this year, several brands leveraged the platform’s technology to execute Holi parties.
Tea brand Tata Tea Premium debuted in the metaverse on Holi by organising its first Holi party. Puneet Das, president—packaged beverages (India and South Asia), Tata Consumer Products, says that their special festive packs are meant to capture the excitement of Holi for some of its markets like Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.
Utkarsh Shukla, founder and CEO of YUG Metaverse that organised the Holi party for Tata Tea and was labelled as world’s first Holi on metaverse, says that it was done so that people can come and play Holi with their family and friends, in the manner which has never ever been experienced before.
Frozen foods and party snacks brand McCain Foods India too had its Holi party on the same day and the platform was powered by YUG Metaverse. Some of the highlights of the Holi party included concerts, virtual DJ, food trucks, dance floor, fireworks, virtual gulaal and NFTs.
Another Indian platform that has been thriving in the metaverse is OneRare, brainchild of the couple Supreet Raju and Gaurav Gupta. The founders call it the world’s first food metaverse or the ‘foodverse’. The brand plans to become food partners to Web3 projects, introducing food menus for game characters, and catering for metaverse events. So, one would not only now explore the metaverse but also have sumptuous meals in the world of web.
The meta-industry is only expanding and touching all the business verticals. OTT platform, Disney+ Hotstar entered the meta universe with the digital avatars of actors Ajay Devgn and Raashi Khanna from Hotstar Specials Rudra: The Edge of Darkness in association with Hungama Digital’s Web3 venture—Hefty Entertainment. The metaverse was then opened to the viewers and fans so that they could experience the world of Rudra.
In February this year, United Colors of Benetton announced its entry into the metaverse. It said that its Corso Vittorio Emanuele store during Milan Fashion Week would transform aligning it with the brand’s new shop in the metaverse, which will open at the same time with the same experiential look and feel. In Benetton’s metaverse, the visitors would be able to buy clothes and participate in gaming experiences that will allow them to accumulate QR codes, which can then be used to make purchases in physical shops.
Antonio Patrissi, chief digital officer of Benetton Group, says, “We are one of the first brands to experiment with a distributed omnichannel model, one that creates a circular relationship between the physical world and the metaverse. The aim is to offer a dimensional link between the present and the future, the real and the virtual, through a brand experience that is increasingly immersive and, above all, in tune with the language of young people.”
Not just events, the metaverse industry has also shown the possibility of being able to find love on the platform. According to UserTesting, a video-based human insight platform, men and women in India and other APAC countries are increasingly becoming drawn towards concepts like ‘dating in a metaverse’.
According to their data, more than 80% of couples on dating apps showed their willingness to try new formats of dating such as metaverse. “However, a few also expressed concern and skepticism on the lack of clarity about the functioning of a metaverse, with many associating the network to a gaming platform in their minds,” states the report.