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NFTs a gateway into the metaverse: Neeraj Roy at MWC 2022

Representing India and speaking about its role in the emerging and interactive Metaverse, Neeraj Roy featured as a Keynote Speaker at the Mobile World Congress held in Barcelona on Wednesday, March 2, 2022. Having made an industry-first foray into the Metaverse via Hefty Entertainment, the session saw Neeraj Roy, Founder of Hungama Digital, one of the leading players in media and entertainment, express his thoughts in the session titled – ‘Fintech & Metaverse’/NFTs a Gateway to the Metaverse. Moderated by Ralph Simon – Founder & CEO, Mobilium, Neeraj was part of an esteemed panel that included reputed pioneers such as Jose Ignacio Goirigolzarri – Chairman, Caixabank; Charles Stewart – CEO, Sotheby’s; Jim McKelvey – Co-Founder & Director, Block. The session has been moderated by Ralph Simon, Founder & CEO, Mobilium

Starting off with explaining the reasons why he decided to make a foray into the Metaverse, Neeraj said, “The economic interest in India has grown over the last few decades. So has the interest culturally. Whether it is to do with food, entertainment, art, it’s all coming alive. It’s with that backdrop that we built this business. Coming from a nation that produces 1500 films a year, we want to give them more access. Along with the collectable element being present, there is also an utility feature that’s being brought into NFTs. Those utilities could lead to Money can’t buy experiences, walkabout role, a meet and greet of the star. I visualize a scenario over the next 4-5 years, where a market like India embraces blockchain very meaningfully.”

Leading the change with regards to Indian entertainment content creation and digital experiences, Neeraj shares his perspective on how he views NFTs and says, “The way I see NFTs is that they’re almost like a key, a gateway that is beautifully placed between this transition from 2.0 to 3.0. We’re really looking at this as a means by which we democratize and usher in the advent of Web 3.0 in potentially all the good that we’ve had from the past and remove what we don’t need.”

When asked if the world today sees itself being in the Phy-gital age due to NFTs, Neeraj added, “Time and again, be it the transition of 1.0, 2.0 or now 3.0, the entertainment industry has been a very big catalyst for the adoption of this metaverse, or any new transition. We want to build across different platforms, but with the intention of giving consumers a closer look into digital experiences. That is what the metaverse is going to build. Add to that, the world of NFTs gives the younger generation their privacy back.

Held every year, MWC, the biggest event of the global mobile phone industry, makes a much-awaited return in 2022 after a two-year gap caused due to Covid-19. It features the most-reputed and innovative minds sharing their insight to provide a roadmap on the future of connectivity. Garnering a resounding attendance of more than 50,000 delegates every year, the event presents a host of network opportunities for stakeholders in the mobile and tech industry.

CT Bureau

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