Banking on an app: In the Clubhouse with DBS
Clubhouse, the San Francisco-based app, is the cool new thing, a unicorn valued at more than $1 billion. On Friday in Singapore, a group of DBS analysts and economists got together on the audio-only platform to discuss the future of electric vehicles. The debate was chatty and inclusive, and a sign of things to come.
An app described by a liberal-leaning London newspaper as “part talkback radio, part conference call, part house party”, might seem an odd place to find two analysts and an economist discussing the future of electric vehicles (EVs).
But that was the state of affairs on Friday at noon local time, when Singapore’s DBS Bank pressed ‘play’ on its first foray into the online world of Clubhouse.
First, a few words on the app itself. Clubhouse offers users a chance to engage in relatively civilized discourse – something sorely lacking in the social media world – on an audio-only platform.
It is invitation-only, meaning new users need to be invited by existing members. That keeps headcount low and size keeps discourse manageable.
Clubhouse is simple … It takes more effort to fall off a log
Anyone can start a ‘room’ and any member can join in. Formats range from lectures to group chats about, say, music or cryptocurrencies, to silent meditation sessions.
The San Francisco firm raised $100 million from investors in January, including existing shareholder Andreessen Horowitz, valuing the world’s newest unicorn at upward of $1 billion.
Founders Rohan Seth and Paul Davison have kept Clubhouse cool and clubbable but not cliquey.