Second Life creator Linden Lab has acquired two firms to enhance web shopping in its virtual world.
Linden Lab has acquired Xstreet SL and OnRez. Linden is consolidating the two marketplaces on the Xstreet SL platform, offering one online shopping experience for customers and merchants.
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This will make it easier for Second Life residents to find virtual goods to purchase and will provide merchants with broader channels to sell their products.
The global market for virtual goods is estimated to be worth about $1.5bn a year, and Second Life already plays a significant role in this market.
In 2008, residents of Second Life purchased and sold more than $360m of virtual goods and services.
Xstreet SL provides an online catalogue, where Second Life residents can browse, purchase and sell Second Life-related virtual goods and services.
OnRez will remain active for a few weeks to give customers and merchants an opportunity to migrate their accounts and product listings over to Xstreet SL.