South African advertising agency, M&C Saatchi Abel, has purchased ‘land’ in the newly created Africarare metaverse – Ubuntuland – marking its move as the first South African and African agency to set up shop in this digital world.
Africa’s first digital domain Africarare, is a 3D virtual reality immersive hub that houses a metaverse marketplace set in Ubuntuland. Ubuntuland will showcase some of the best of African art, fashion, entertainment, sport, tech and creativity and will provide a platform for artists from across the continent to showcase their work.
“The unique afro-themed metaverse establishes local representation in a growing global digital universe and will open our continent up to significant digital and economic growth opportunities for both talent, clients and industry colleagues to come together to solve business and even societal challenges with creativity,“ says Mike Abel, M&C Saatchi Group South Africa Founding Partner and CEO.
“This aligns with our own very clear commitment to pushing the bounds of South African capabilities and creativity in the work we produce across the continent. We love a good problem as a team, and we believe that creativity is the most significant key to solving these. Creating a virtual home for this is a very natural and fluid extension of our ability to do exactly this,” he says.
Investing in the first African metaverse allows M&C Saatchi Abel and its partners access to a global network through social technology designed to remove terrestrial borders and open up trade, collaboration and regional or global partnerships. Beyond just business opportunities and social interaction experiences, M&C Saatchi Abel Ubuntuland unlocks an accessible home for economic opportunities, decentralised access to global creativity and best practice, as well as skills and knowledge sharing.
Ubuntuland is created by Mann Made and will be open to public land sales from 2nd or 3rd quarter of 2022 as the team continue to work on the build for their Afro-futuristic world of proudly local creativity. Together with Mann Made, M&C Saatchi Abel and Africarare will create a cultural, social, and commercial destination for African creativity in the metaverse.
“For us it’s all about building a thriving engaged community and ecosystem in Ubuntuland as we develop this new metaverse. We are thrilled to be working with one of Africa and the worlds most talented creative agencies as we focus on unlocking Africa’s best talent and connect Africa to the global digital economy” says Mann Made Media & Africarare CEO, Mic Mann.
This planned inclusive world for African creativity will allow creators to be inspired by – and add to – cultural experiences as well contribute to and profit from various commercial opportunities. The virtual hub is also intended to house the largest collection of African contemporary art from the M&C Saatchi collection, host sport and entertainment experiences, establish an open-source platform to share skills and learnings; and will host workshops from agencies across the M&C Saatchi Group.
Central to interacting in the metaverse are Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). These digital assets or tradable tokens are created from art, music, videos, pop culture references or unique creative creations that can be bought and sold online. The concept of engaging with and trading on creativity and its value and relevance to individuals is one that is deeply rooted in the agency’s 12+ year run working with South African and international brands. The virtual marketplace will provide the perfect platform for any creative to develop and monetise its creative product as an NFT.
“We aim to give Africans the access and resources they need to unlock their creative fire power from the home base of Africa’s digital creative destination – M&C Saatchi Abel Ubuntuland. Using our capabilities as industry leaders, we can enable and empower Africa to grow and flourish on a global playing field,” concludes Abel.