Today the Nikkei reported that Japan’s Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (MUFG) is partnering with Animoca Brands for non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Hong Kong-based Animoca is one of the most active companies in the sector, particularly when it comes to gaming. It entered the Japanese market in late 2021. MUFG might be one of the first big Japanese banks to enter the NFT arena, but SBI Group already has a dedicated subsidiary, SBINFTs.
Specifics about what NFTs might be launched were not shared.
Today’s news follows the announcement a couple of weeks ago that MUFG’s Progmat blockchain platform for security tokens would also support stablecoins and utility tokens, including NFTs. In the latter case the emphasis was on rewards to shoppers and shareholders.
In January, Animoca Brands announced a $358 million funding that included Soros Fund Management and valued the company at more than $5 billion. The company raised $216 million in 2021. And one of its subsidiaries, The Sandbox metaverse, raised $93 million.
Currently, Japan is in its peak hype phase for NFTs, with numerous projects launching daily. In February 2020, several IP rights holders and advertising agencies such as Dentsu created the Japan Contents Blockchain Initiative. It recently formed a working group for NFTs.