Bilibili — one of China’s biggest video sites particularly known for its content dedicated for anime, comics and games fans — is testing its blockchain UPowerchain that could help the company build its metaverse business, as Chinese tech giants are sparing no efforts to enter the metaverse space.

Fast facts

  • Bilibili has confirmed with Forkast.News that the company is now developing what it calls UPowerchain (高能链), and the current focus is more on content and copyright protection to provide ownership certificates for digitized works. A browser tool that could be used to look up on-chain information is already live, Bilibili said.
  • The Nasdaq- and Hong Kong-listed video-streaming site appears to be a natural fit for the metaverse, given its already existing tight online community. Rui Chen, CEO of Bilibili, said on an earnings call in November following the release of the company’s third-quarter report that Bilibili has a large base of content creators who are creating content in Bilibili’s system. “That makes Bilibili the ideal platform to further explore in this metaverse concept.”
  • For example, there are many content creators on Bilibili’s platform who leverage technology like motion capture to turn themselves into a character in the virtual world. “They sing, dance and tell jokes with this avatar,” Chen said. “All of those have attracted users … This is a perfect example of implementing the creation system into this metaverse concept.”
  • Notably, Bilibili has already formed a tight user community of over 267 million monthly active users (MAUs), up 35% year-on-year, according to its third-quarter report. “Within these MAUs, a vast majority of them are the most creative and energetic young Chinese. So that’s why I do think Bilibili is probably one of the best companies to practice or to get into the metaverse business,” Chen added.
  • As the idea of the metaverse continues to catch on, Chinese tech giants are joining the race. Pony Ma, chairman and CEO of Tencent — the Chinese payments and social media giant that is also the world’s biggest video games vendor — said in November on an earnings call that the metaverse is “very exciting, but a little bit vague,” and “an opportunity that really adds growth to the existing industries.”
  • NetEase, a Chinese video gaming company, also said in November on a Q3 earnings call the company “will be one of the fastest runners in the metaverse space.”

Ningwei Qin contributed to this report.