Chow Town: a game that teaches kids entrepreneurship

Parents around the world are discovering that digital games have the potential to offer their children educational experiences that help them develop life skills. Research has shown that games can improve cognitive development, social skills and overall wellbeing. Provided parents monitor screen time to ensure that their children balance gaming with more active pastimes, gaming can be an excellent way to teach important life lessons.

Nedbank has become the first leading African bank to enter the gaming world with the launch of Chow Town, an engaging game in the Roblox metaverse that will help to nurture budding young gamers’ entrepreneurial and financial management skills.

Chow Town: innovative, safe, educational gaming adventure

Nedbank developed Chow Town in collaboration with Sea Monster Entertainment on Roblox, a gaming platform that’s massively popular among Gen-Z. Chow Town is a unique tycoon-style game designed to offer children aged 9 to 12 a fun way to learn important financial lessons. Players must set up, expand and manage a virtual restaurant.

The game features a varied mix of international and South African food items to prepare for their customers. As the preteen empire-builders develop their entrepreneurial instincts by earning badges as rewards to reinvest, they also learn crucial financial management skills through incremental investment in their virtual restaurant.

The safety of children playing online is a top priority for both Roblox and Nedbank. The game incorporates robust online safety measures, including content moderation and secure chat features and age-verification processes, to ensure a secure, controlled environment for young players. Parents can have peace of mind knowing their children are safe while enjoying Chow Town.

Developing financial literacy and management skills from an early age

The game integrates lessons on budgeting, investing and financial decision-making, equipping children with the knowledge to make informed choices about their money as they grow older. It stimulates their interest in entrepreneurship by presenting them with real-life business challenges within a fascinating virtual world. The young businesspeople are inspired to think creatively, solve problems, and develop a robust entrepreneurial mindset from a young age.

Through immersive gameplay, players must manage their virtual restaurant's finances, including stock management and investment decisions. This hands-on approach allows them to develop crucial financial management skills while enjoying a fun gaming experience.


Research shows that games foster learning and development in children


One notable study published in the Harvard Business Review found that video games can cultivate leadership skills in children. The study, 7 leadership lessons from video games, highlights critical leadership lessons that can be learned from gaming experiences:

1. Embrace a diverse team

Many video games teach players the value of teamwork and collaboration by requiring them to work with various characters who possess unique skills and abilities. This lesson translates to real-world situations where leaders must collaborate effectively with individuals from different backgrounds who have different areas of expertise.

2. Adapt to new situations

Video games often present players with unexpected challenges and rapidly changing environments, encouraging adaptability and resilience. These essential leadership qualities can be developed and refined through gaming experiences.

3. Learn from failure

Most games involve trial and error, which can help children become more comfortable with failure and more willing to learn from their mistakes. This resilience is valuable for leaders as they navigate uncertain situations.

4. Pursue a clear vision

Computer games often require players to set clear goals and develop strategies to achieve them. This teaches children the importance of having a vision and the steps necessary to accomplish it, a skill vital for effective leadership.

5. Master the art of feedback

Many games offer immediate feedback, allowing players to understand the consequences of their actions and adapt their strategies accordingly. This ability to process feedback and adjust is essential for leaders in any context.

6. Value experimentation

Games allow players to experiment with different approaches, often leading to new discoveries and innovative solutions. Embracing experimentation and learning from both successes and failures can significantly improve a leader's ability to drive change.

7. Appreciate persistence

Many games reward persistence and dedication, reinforcing the importance of commitment and perseverance in achieving goals. Leaders must be tenacious and steadfast in their pursuit of success.

Anisha Khan, Head of Group Marketing Strategy and Operations, Group Marketing and Corporate Affairs at Nedbank, is confident that the game will appeal to young players. ‘As a brand, we realise that we need to be at the forefront of digital and technological innovation. Our aim is to transform banking by leveraging popular, safe digital platforms to offer alternative experiences to engage, surprise and delight our clients,’ she says. ‘Roblox is popular with the 9 to 12 age group – the right age to start learning about entrepreneurship and sound money choices. Chow Town allows us to nurture entrepreneurial skills and offer children an educational experience in a relatable environment.’

Experience Chow Town today

Parents and children can explore the exciting world of Chow Town by searching for it in the Roblox app, and experience the benefits of gaming with a purpose – nurturing a new generation of entrepreneurs and helping young minds develop valuable life skills for a brighter future.