Man Behind Kamal Haasan’s Metaverse Project Answers

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In the recent months, digital token is an area where India has been more focussed than ever, and the idea has engulfed everyone — from the common man to celebrities of different walks. From movies to business, the concept has gripped the celebrity world, with more and more of them inclining towards non-fungible tokens or NFTs. Actors like Amitabh Bachchan, Sunny Leone and others have launched or made the announcement of launching their own collection of digital tokens. The newest entrant in this group is actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan, who along with digital collectible platform Fantico, announced the launch of his own NFTs on Sunday. Haasan has also become the first Indian celebrity to have a very own digital avatar himself in a metaverse.

Ever since the announcement, the response has been ‘overwhelming’, says Abhayanand Singh, Group CEO and co-founder of Vistas Media Capital, a Singapore-based company operating Fantico. In an interview with News18.com, Singh reveals that Haasan is the first Indian celebrity to understand the concept of Metaverse and has forayed into this domain.

Speaking on the details about Kamal Haasan’s Metaverse entry, Singh said that Fantico is developing various facets of it for the NFTs and digital avatars. “They will consist of his (Kamal Haasan’s) various film characters, representing his title “Ulaga Nayagan”, the universal hero! Also, we would be showcasing his posters, digital avatars, movie clips. The idea is to be able to show his larger-than-life persona on the metaverse,” he tells News18.com. 

The company, whose beta version was launched in August 2021, plans to launch the star’s NFTs in the next two months, says the CEO. According to a statement, Fantico is a premium licensed digital collectibles platform, aimed to reinvent fandoms on a Metaverse. It plans to give fans an opportunity to discover, collect, stash and trade the physical and digital collectibles of their favorite celebrities. 

However, the concept of NFT is still in its nascent stages in India, with Haasan being one of the first celebrities to come forward for it. Even though it has been around since 2014 globally, NFT is a new area for Indians to explore — even newer than cryptocurrencies, whose future is still uncertain in the country. But Singh doesn’t perceive any threat despite this. He explains, “NFTs, even though based on Blockchain, is a separate concept (than cryptocurrencies) altogether. NFTs can represent a large variety of options, which may appeal to a wide population of investors. One of the major advantages that NFTs offer is the potential for collecting. The market for NFTs can provide individuals a place to collect and trade unique items that may appreciate wildly over time.”

According to him, the NFT market has the potential to become a massive opportunity to digitally collect and trade in a world that continues to incline towards digitisation. “The hope is that as the marketplace and demand continue to develop for NFTs. It looks like NFT trading may just be the next big thing in investing,” says Singh. 

Being digital assets, NFTs are prone to be subject to constant scrutiny regarding their security. At this stage, people may be worried about their security but NFTs use blockchain as a digital ledger to ensure the unique nature of the asset and check for duplicity, just like cryptocurrencies. However, if investors start understanding NFTs and get familiar with the functionality and economic concept of fungibility, the problem will have some solution going forward, claims Singh.

“Fungible items can be exchanged with each other at ease as their values are primarily tied to their unique nature.  There is a possibility for creators to verify scarcity and authenticate any digital asset. Once bought an NFT can be sold on a wide variety of exchanges and marketplaces. Buyers also have the option of holding on to them as value increases over time. Being on Blockchain ensures a seamless record for each NFT,” he explains.

Fantico, as a licensed digital collectibles platform, gives investors a chance to embrace this new age form of investment. Fantico on August 8 appointed film director Aishwaryaa Rajinikanth, daughter of superstar Rajinikanth, as its creative director. 

“We are the only platform which is backing the NFTs with its physical assets,” says Singh, adding, “All the creators on the platform are celebrities across genres. We have an illustrious sourcing pipeline of top celebrities in the country and are looking to expand the concept of digital assets in India. (We are) not only creating a metaverse but also curating properties that will define this industry in India.”

The company is indeed slowly marking its territory in India.

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