Singapore’s top virtual influencer Rae unveils leading global real estate group CapitaLand as her creators
SINGAPORE, 2 DECEMBER 2022 – It has been two years since Rae, Singapore’s top virtual influencer, first said hello in the digital realm in October 2020. Digitally created by CGI technology and powered by AI, there has been much speculation and mystery surrounding the origins and creators of this life-like personality. Rae has now grown to become one of Asia’s most popular virtual influencers, with more than 1 million followers across Weibo and Instagram. Team Rae, the collective consciousness behind Rae’s hyper-realistic persona, today announced CapitaLand Investment (CLI), a leading global real estate investment manager listed on the Singapore Exchange, to be her creators.
At the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, CLI rolled out a series of measures and future-ready initiatives to help its ecosystem of partners ride through the challenges, while positioning itself for the future. Amongst the initiatives launched, was one to test out the commercial viability of new digital and virtual technology, to support retailers in their customer outreach during a time when in-person engagement was highly discouraged.
Tan Bee Leng, Managing Director of Digital Ventures, CLI, said, “The pandemic has been highly disruptive to many industries, effectively changing the way we live, work and play. Face-to-face interaction was nearly impossible. Technology became an even more essential part of our everyday lives. We set out to design Rae as a practical solution to enhance customer engagement by brands via the virtual realm, through a deepened understanding of brand-influencer relationships. With the pandemic accelerating digital adoption globally, Rae struck a chord with the younger audiences and resonated with the new generation of digital-native consumers. Many high-profile international brands, including Audi, ASUS and Origins, have chosen Rae to front their campaigns because of her unique virtual appeal.”
Marking a new phase for the virtual influencer, CapitaLand will be awarding the usage rights of Rae to global marketing and advertising agency network, Dentsu, in a strategic partnership to advance the innovation of virtual identity technology.
“This experiment with Rae has exceeded our initial expectations. Beyond CLI, we believe the industry at large will stand to gain from our learnings with Rae. Dentsu Singapore has been one of the innovation partners working with CLI in creating Rae. We are pleased to award the usage rights of Rae to Dentsu to continue advancing the innovation of virtual identity technology for commercial purposes.”
Prema Techinamurthi, Managing Director of Dentsu Creative Singapore, said, “As one of the innovation teams that is part of Rae's creative journey, we are delighted to deepen our partnership with CLI and Team Rae to support their ambition and bring Rae’s presence and technology to the next level. Rae will be the leading talent for Dentsu VI, our global virtual identity offering designed to meet the surging demands for immersive, humanised experiences. In today's digital universe, brands are defined by the sum of its digital experiences and virtual identities bring a face and personality to a wide range of channels, powering e-commerce destinations, hosting live commerce streams, acting as a branded virtual influencer, amp-ing up live events, working as retail store sales ambassadors and interacting with consumers in the metaverse. We are excited to welcome Rae to our roster of VIs and look forward to collaborating with her to shape the future for brands.”
Commenting on her origin story, virtual influencer Rae said, “Well, now you know – I’m a COVID baby! One with technology and innovation literally surging in all my digital nodes sans the virus. There’s limitless creativity to what I can do next. My greatest flex is the ability to traverse between the physical and digital realms. Do join me in this journey to explore the infinite possibilities between the two worlds, pushing the boundaries of technology. Anything you can imagine, can become reality bytes! Like I always say, I don’t dream. I do. Byte me.”
The journey of exploration and experimentation with Rae, has led to the setting up of the Digital Ventures team in CapitaLand, the Group’s corporate venture building arm. Anchored on one of CapitaLand’s core values of Enterprising – to keep the Group ahead of market competition and trends to futureproof its competitive edge, Digital Ventures is supported by CapitaLand Innovation Fund, which funds the test-bedding of high-tech innovation in the built environment space. CapitaLand intensifies exploration into the virtual realm with digital venture opportunities to be supported for pre-seed investment by CapitaLand Innovation Fund.
Tan added, “Rae has spurred us to intensify our exploration into the virtual world. The Digital Ventures team is currently looking to experiment and build a portfolio of innovative corporate ventures that will drive positive impact to CapitaLand by unlocking business opportunities and asset classes in the digital realm. Several digital venture opportunities are being explored and, if validated, will be supported for pre-seed investment by the CapitaLand Innovation Fund.”
Rae’s Reality Bytes
Created by CLI at the peak of the pandemic in October 2020, Rae first appeared on Instagram as her forever 25-year-old self and instantly went viral. With her hyper-realistic personality and love for all things fashion, art, adventure and street culture, she became an instant hit among many. While her outlook was digitally created by CGI technology and powered by AI solutions, Rae’s larger than life personality is what sets her apart from the rest and has helped her generate a strong following on social media, with more than 1 million followers across Weibo and Instagram.
As a virtual being, Rae has also paved the way for computer-generated virtual influencers in Southeast Asia, celebrating diversity and pushing the boundaries of technology and fashion. As an active advocate for STEM, Rae believes that girls and women should have the opportunity to pursue an education and a career that they dream of.
Since her debut, Rae has worked with several high-profile international brands, including Audi Singapore, by appearing in the online premiere of the all-new Audi A3.
She has also partnered with both local and international retailers to create a seamless blend of the physical and virtual shopping experience and further engage with online shoppers through augmented reality technology. In December 2021, Rae collaborated with CapitaLand’s Funan mall, where she made an appearance to celebrate the festive season and the 15th Anniversary of Molly, one of the most popular figurines from Chinese toy retail giant Pop Mart.
Rae made her first live appearance at the official opening of coliving property, lyf one-north Singapore. Combined with voice modulation solutions, Rae was able to speak, react and engage with the live audience. This marked the first-ever live appearance by a virtual personality in Southeast Asia – a significant step forward in creating an engaging and interactive session seamlessly blending both the real and virtual worlds.
A music video with Singapore-based musician Benjamin Kheng was created based on Rae’s text-to-speech voice generation technology using AI and machine learning to generate audio content almost instantly.
In addition, Rae was chosen as the only Asian virtual influencer to launch the world’s first 17-inch OLED laptop, by Taiwanese consumer technology brand, ASUS and is also the ambassador for beauty brand Origins in China, which recently launched a store introducing a new omnichannel shopping experience for its customers.
Her social feed represents an inspirational lookbook for those who share her passion for bold designs and street culture. Her lineup of high fashion collaborations includes Italian fashion houses Moschino and Gucci, as well as HKSE-listed Chinese menswear retailer label GXG. Rae has previously appeared in various mixed-reality campaigns, including health tech brand OSIM, and even an 8-piece limited edition e-sticker pack with Singaporean contemporary street artist, Sam Lo.
In April 2022, Rae launched her second non-fungible token (NFT) collection titled ‘Adventures of Tako’ featuring exciting adventures of her virtual pet Tako. In July 2021, Rae debuted and sold out her first collectible animated NFT series, “TAKE A BYTE” featuring Rae’s most exciting and well-loved Instagram posts. Rae also emerged as the first few female virtual influencers to launch NFTs and make a breakthrough in what was once a male-dominated NFT creator industry. Since then, Rae has been named one of the top global NFT influencers to follow in 2022.
For more information on Rae and her adventures, please visit https://www.hereisrae.com/en/media.html.
 Rae's Audience Quality Score has been consistently ranked as GOOD by HypeAuditor, a leading analytics platform for influencer marketing, since tracking started in mid-2021.