One of the largest music publishers is pushing into the metaverse with a partnership with a leading digital land company. Here’s the details and what it could mean in the future.
What Happened: Warner Music Group Corp WMG announced a partnership with The Sandbox to create the first music-themed world in the gaming metaverse of The Sandbox.
The music-themed world in The Sandbox will have a musical theme park and concert venue that will be used to host concerts and musical experiences featuring Warner Music artists.
“Our partnership with The Sandbox adds a new layer of possibility in the metaverse, with the ownership of virtual real estate,” Warner Music Group Chief Digital Officer and EVP Business Development Oana Ruxandra said.
Artists will be able to tour without leaving their home, according to the announcement.
“The agreement opens the doors to WMG talent appearing in The Sandbox – thus creating a new arena for musical entertainment in the metaverse,” the release said.
The Sandbox has partnered with musicians and brands including Snoop Dogg, Dadmau5, Steve Aoki, Care Bears, Atari, “The Walking Dead” and others.
“This strategic partnership with Warner Music Group brings the open metaverse one step forward in the direction of fan-owned and community-driven initiatives – the possibilities are very exciting,” The Sandbox COO and co-founder Sebastien Borget said.
Why It’s Important: This marks the first NFT metaverse entry by Warner Music Group and comes as companies are increasingly showing interest in NFTs and the metaverse.
Warner Music Group said the partnership could open new revenue streams for their artists and also provide more opportunities for fans to connect with artists.
Warner Music Group represents and holds rights to hundreds of artists including Blake Shelton, Bruno Mars, Cardi B, Ed Sheeran, Gorillaz, Green Day, Kelly Clarkson, Phil Collins, Prince, Rod Stewart and Alvin and the Chipmunks.
“As a first-mover, Warner Music has secured the equivalent of beachfront property in the metaverse. On the LAND, we’ll develop persistent, immersive social music experiences that defy real-world limitations and allow our artists and their fans to engage like never before,” Ruxandra said.
A new sale of LAND in The Sandbox will take place in March 2022, allowing fans the opportunity to buy adjacent land to the WMG property.
Transactions for LAND and NFTs related to The Sandbox have increased substantially in value. The coin SAND SAND/USD tied to The Sandbox has also risen in value, going from a low of $0.078 to a high of $8.44 in the last year.
Someone paid 71,000 SAND, or around $450,000, to acquire a virtual plot of land next to Snoop Dogg’s virtual land. Some companies are betting on LAND purchases as well.
Sony Music, a unit of Sony Corp SONY, partnered with Roblox Corp RBLX to connect its artists with the chance to hold virtual events inside the popular games.
Popular game Fortnite, which is part of Tencent Holdings TCEHY partially owned Epic Games, has hosted virtual concerts in the metaverse attended by millions of fans.
The partnership between The Sandbox and Warner Music Group could strengthen the continued growth of the metaverse and NFTs and also prove to be a win-win for the two companies.
WMG Price Action: WMG shares trade at $40.12 versus a 52-week trading range of $31.50 to $50.23. The stock was up 3.3% at $40.65 late in Friday's session.
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