The virtual world's goods and virtual transactions continue to challenge the physical world in terms of transaction volume and valuations. Recently, someone sold a virtual property in the Entropia virtual world for $635,000 dollars. Yes, that is correct $635,000 USD for a virtual item. The owner sold the property in one of Entropia's worlds called Planet Calypso.
The interesting aspect of this historic sale is that I was notified by a worldwide real estate developer and builder about the transaction. Clearly, important people in the physical business world are taking notice of the meteoric rise of virtual goods and currency and wanting to find out how they too can take part in this opportunity. I certainly have a large and active contingent of virtual world/currency business owners and entrepreneurs contacting me about trade in virtual items. However, this is the first time a successful conventional physical world business leader has seriously stated an interest in figuring out how to make the cross over from a physical business model to a virtual model.
The Entropia world has been with us for some time and has been a pioneer in virtual goods sales and virtual currency/physical world currency exchanges. They have been a real sleeper from the press perspective since Facebook decided to get into the virtual currency business. We tend to forget about World Of Warcraft. Entropia, WeeWorld, and IMVU to name a few virtual worlds that have been around for some time and actually have significant valuation form an investment perspective. They have great revenue streams, dedicated players, a built in social network and a constantly changing environment that keeps people engaged over time.
Are these worlds the next big investment targets? Well of course, I have already been contacted by a VC about how best to take advantage of these virtual world properties.
Kevin Flood is the CEO of Gameinlane, Inc. Kevin writes extensively about online games and their impact and integration into iGaming and E-commerce environments. Kevin is a frequent speaker at online game events and conferences in Asia, Europe and the US. Kevin and his Gameinlane team are currently working with online gambling, social gaming and e-commerce companies integrating social gaming with online gaming operations and integrate game mechanics into e-commerce applications.