Samsung Shows Support For Blockchain-Based Gaming Through Axie Infinity Investment Round

Sky Mavis, a Vietnam-based blockchain gaming company and creator of the popular play-to-earn game Axie Infinity, raised a total of US$152 million in Series B funding in which the funding was partly contributed by Samsung Next, Samsung’s main investment arm.

Samsung has already funded a number of blockchain gaming businesses, including Dapper Labs, the creator of CryptoKitties, and Hong Kong-based Animoca Brands.

Despite the fact that the South Korean conglomerate Samsung is expanding its involvement in the area of blockchain-based gaming, official distribution of blockchain-based games in South Korea is presently banned.

Huge Potential of Blockchain & NFT As Reason of Investment

The main reason for Samsung’s investment, according to Kim Jeong-soo, a professor of industrial management and engineering at Myongji University, is the high return on investment.

“Samsung is fully aware that Axie Infinity is the most popular game right now, much like CryptoKitties was before. Furthermore, it may indicate that the company recognises the increasing significance of blockchain and NFTs,” Kim said.

However, in South Korea, where Samsung is headquartered, games containing any elements of blockchain technology or non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have been prohibited from being released by the country’s Game Rating and Administration Committee.

This is due to beliefs that in-game, random rewards, some of which are NFTs, may encourage speculative behaviour.

However, Kim also believes that the government will ease restrictions regarding blockchain gaming at some point in the future.

Given the government’s heavy investment in building the metaverse, he thinks that debates around virtual assets, such as ownership and value transfer, will most likely be extremely positive.

Avoiding Speculative Aspects In Metaverse Gaming

In the meantime, Kim says, the gaming industry will have to figure out how to get rid of the speculative aspects.

Similar to the Pokémon GO game, in Axie Infinity, players are compensated in NFTs for creating monsters known as “Axies,” which are then sold to other players.

Since the game’s initial release, the game has gained a significant following due to its support in developing countries such as the Philippines and Venezuela.

According to Sky Mavis, the number of daily active Axie Infinity users has risen to over 2 million, up from just around 30,000 in April of this year. In addition, the value traded on the company’s own NFT platform has exceeded more than $2 billion.

Sky Mavis was founded by Andy Ho, Aleksander Leonard Larsen, Trung Nguyen, and Jeffrey Zirlin in 2018, a year before the Axie Infinity game was launched.


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