The band “Coldplay” were the first real-world stars to offer their fans a concert in the “Metaverse” in 2021. The group thus hinted at the possibilities that could open up in the new virtual world. For we are at the beginning of a third phase of the digital revolution. The metaverse refers to the seamless linking of the virtual and real worlds into a common digital space without internal borders. One of the key themes is Web 3.0 (a new iteration of the World Wide Web which incorporates concepts such as decentralization, blockchain technologies, and token-based economics). All over the world, technology companies, and many others, are investing billions in research and the development of components of such a metaverse. Allianz Global Investors sees this as both a new and long-term manifestation of the theme of digital life.
“Is the metaverse real? Yes, we think it is. As the divide between our ‘real’ and digital lives diminishes, the metaverse is not some distant, faraway land. It is quite literally closer than you think – and so are the investment opportunities it offers. We believe investors can now capitalise on this theme – we see potential opportunities to invest in companies creating Web 3.0 infrastructure, the application ecosystem built to utilise this infrastructure, and the digital worlds that emerge through these interoperable applications. Taking a longer-term view, we believe that the metaverse will grow to encompass many non-digital industries – the real estate and financial sectors as well as manufacturing and agriculture. That is why investors should draw on multiple, cross-industry perspectives to identify the winners in this environment”.Virginie Maisonneuve, Global CIO Equity in Allianz GI.
AllianzGI has therefore launched the Allianz Metaverse fund to enable investors to participate in this development. Fund manager Marc Phanitsiri from San Francisco invests worldwide in shares of companies from the entire value chain for the creation of virtual worlds:
- Web 3.0 infrastructure (such as Web 3.0 hardware/software; networks)
- Application ecosystems (examples include spatial computing, i.e. 3D interaction of people and computers; blockchain)
- Virtual experiences (such as digital world providers).
“With Allianz Metaverse, we are opening up an opportunity for investors in Europe to benefit specifically from the third phase of the digital revolution and the resulting societal changes. The fund invests in companies that the investment team believes are best suited to enable or harness the metaverse. Only an active investment approach with targeted individual stock selection is capable of doing this”.Marisa Aguilar, general manager for Spain and Portugal in Allianz GI.