Zoom is getting into the growing virtual events sector

19 May 2021

Image: © Vlad/Stock.adobe.com

The video-conferencing giant is taking on the likes of Hopin with the launch of Zoom Events.

Zoom is expanding its business beyond video calls with the launch of a virtual events platform this summer.

Zoom Events will provide an all-in-one platform for event organisers, with the ability to produce ticketed live events for internal or external audiences of any size.

The company said users will be able to manage, host and monetise events. These events can be free or paid, one-time or a series, and can be made private or public.

Features will include a hub for managing and sharing event details, customisable ticketing and registration, the ability to control access and billing from one portal, integrated networking and event statistics.

Zoom Events can be used with an existing paid Zoom Meetings or Video Webinar licence. OnZoom, the company’s events platform and marketplace that is still in beta testing, will be rebranded and incorporated into Zoom Events.

“We know that people are looking for flexibility in how they attend events in the future,” said Oded Gal, chief product officer at Zoom.

“The hybrid model is here to stay, and Zoom Events is a perfect solution for our customers who are looking to produce and host customer, company and public events with an easy, yet powerful solution. This is another way we’re helping customers scale to meet consumer demands and the evolving virtual and hybrid landscape.”

A website page is showing the Zoom Events hub, with details of different events listed.

Preview of Zoom Events. Image: Zoom

Zoom’s last full-year earnings were $2.65bn, up 326pc compared to the previous year. The surge was attributed to the mass shift to remote working during the pandemic, with Zoom calls becoming one of the must-have tools for workplaces and schools.

But virtual events is another area that has seen huge growth over the past year. In a recent Zoom survey, 52pc of respondents in the US said they would attend events both in person and virtually after the pandemic.

One of the big names already making waves in this sector is Hopin. The UK company launched its virtual events platform in early 2020, and was recently valued at $5.65bn after raising $400m in fresh funding.

Hopin has acquired several companies in recent months and launched a new mobile app to help with its expansion. It said in March that there have been more than 90,000 event organisers on its platform.

Sarah Harford was sub-editor of Silicon Republic