CommBank has launched a storybook. It’s a fantasy, the story of Sammy the Space Koala, an Australian koala who travels through the galaxy in search of a magical present for her Grandma’s birthday.
But it’s not just for kids’ amusement. The storybook, The Teleporter Adventures, and its accompanying VR app were designed by M&C Saatchi to teach kids how to manage money.
Throughout the story, kids are invited to participate in virtual reality chapters, learning important lessons about financial ‘needs’ and ‘wants’.
The Teleporter Adventures is an expansion of CommBank’s Start Smart program, the largest educational program of its kind in the world. Start Smart is an interactive financial education program teaches children the principles of money management, including saving, spending, earning and investing, delivered in schools and vocational education institutions across Australia. The Teleporter Adventures aims to reinforce the financial education lessons learned at school.
Around 10% of Australian 15-year-olds have not reached even a baseline level of financial literacy. That means their future wellbeing does not yet stand on a solid platform.
Michael Canning, executing creative director at M&C Saatchi, commented: “The Teleporter Adventures is a hybrid of the classic storybook and virtual reality worlds. As a new platform for immersive storytelling, we hope to reach more and more kids and communities around Australia with a fun way to learn about money, building on CommBank’s proud heritage of financial education.”
To create the book, Sammy the Space Koala, M&C Saatchi collaborated with Australian author, Ursula Dubosarsky, winner of the Australian Children’s Book of the Year Award. The printed storybook comes in a package with a smartphone app (available on iOS and Android) and Google cardboard headset, branded The Teleporter, which kids use to teleport into virtual reality chapters of the story.
Stuart Tucker, general manager of brand, sponsorship and marketing operations at CommBank, commented, “This platform harnesses virtual reality and education to build on the work we already do to prepare Australian children for their future. For us, it’s the first step in exploring the possibilities technology has to offer in improving financial literacy.”
Google’s director of media and entertainment, Bart Jenniches, commented that the platform is “a great example of how Australian brands can use virtual reality and inexpensive viewers to communicate and educate.”
M&C Saatchi worked with Tricky Jigsaw to design the product experience and Fin Design to illustrate the storybook and translate those assets into the world of virtual reality.
The Teleporter Adventures will be publicised in CommBank’s owned channels, social and with a 30 second launch film animated by Heckler TV and produced in-house by M&C Saatchi.
Agency: M&C Saatchi
Chief Creative Officer: Andy DiLallo
Executive Creative Director: Michael Canning
Creative Director: Tim Green
Copywriter: Jonathan Flannery
Art Director: Paul Gregson
Creative Technologist: Simon Kent
Digital Producer: Emma Wetton
Account Service: Kezia Quinn & Anna Hunt
Planning: Nicky Bryson & Alex Roper
Project Director: Danielle Mountford & Lauren Thompson
Customer Experience: Jason Crane & Rasmus Pant
Product Experience: Tricky Jigsaw
Author: Ursula Dubosarsky
Senior Print Producer: Greg Hyslop
Digital Designer: Rod Robles, Kim Janson & Kentaro Yoshia
VR & Illustration Partner: Fin Design + Effects
Illustrator and Character Designer: Tim Streets
VR Artists: Shane Bower, Mike Thompson, Tim Streets
Music & Sound Design: Bamm Bamm Wolfgang
Social Content Production: Zoe Paulsen & Mick Perry
Post production (film): Heckler TV
3D Producer (film): Aborah Buick
3D Designer/ Animator (film): Simon Robson & Holger Gutknecht
Brand manager Andy Sutherland
Executive manager: Tamisine Heath