It was only a couple months ago that the metaverse surged in popularity as an investing theme, but the leading companies of that landscape have already been firmly established, according to Goldman Sachs. The bank named three buy-rated stocks to play the next wave of computing, also known as Web 3.0, and the metaverse, an element of it, in a recent note to investors: Meta Platforms , Snap and Roblox . "Decentralized web activity and virtual experiences could become hallmarks of many of the next wave of computing in Web 3.0," analyst Eric Sheridan said in the note. "Looking forward, we see a multi-year period of investment ahead as companies position for computing needs, hardware and software development and test and learn on use cases for consumer and enterprise." The firm sees "dramatic shifts" in Web 3.0 industry trends that could "impact current investor perceptions" of platform moat, industry input costs, headwinds to monetization and potential for shifting media and commerce trends, the note said. Here's what they had to say about their metaverse plays: Meta Platforms Interest in the metaverse boomed among investors around the time Meta Platforms changed its name from Facebook, at the end of October. The name change is just one reason Goldman likes the stock. "Over the past several quarters, Meta Platforms has laid out its long-term vision for positioning the company for Web 3.0 and the metaverse as a successor to the mobile internet, including a company name change and a commitment to scaling investments against this opportunity," analyst Eric Sheridan said in the note. He added, "We expect Meta to be a long-term secular winner with regard to the metaverse and view them as well-positioned to capitalize on the next wave of computing." Goldman has a $445 price target on Meta, which is about 33% from where the stock closed on Friday. Snap More than 200 million users interact with Snap's wearable augmented reality glasses on a daily basis, helping give the company one of the largest networks of AR users, Goldman noted. It has also been developing tools to make it easier to create and monetize AR experiences. "We view Snap as well positioned to benefit from increasing AR adoption over the next several years, particularly within the shopping/social commerce space (through its AR Try-On and Scan visual search product offerings) as the lines between digital advertising and e-commerce continue to blur," Sheridan said. Snap, which ended the trading day Friday at $45.29 per share, has a price target of $80 from Goldman. Roblox As one of the most popular gaming platforms in the world, Roblox is well positioned to further facilitate engagement in interactive virtual worlds, Sheridan said. It has about 50 million daily active users, 200 million monthly active users and has made substantial investments in user identity, social elements, economy and content creation. That scale will help it create a "fertile environment" for use cases beyond gaming, like ecommerce, music, advertising, and education. Goldman's price target on Roblox is $124, which implies upside of about 24%.
Mark Zuckerberg is going to start letting a handful of Horizon Worlds creators sell virtual items as he continues with his push to the metaverse.
Facebook | via Reuters
It was only a couple months ago that the metaverse surged in popularity as an investing theme, but the leading companies of that landscape have already been firmly established, according to Goldman Sachs.