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Tired of swiping? This app hosts parties and events to take dating offline

Tired of swiping? This app hosts parties and events to take dating offline
Bring your single friends and get meeting people in real life (Picture: Inner Circle)

Dating has changed so much in the last few decades that it’s almost unrecognisable from the ‘courting’ our parents knew.

But while swiping to find the perfect match widens your pool of prospects, it can also be draining; from endless digital small-talk to the ghosting and bad behaviour that the anonymity of apps enables.

Covid lockdowns have affected things too, with research from dating app Inner Circle finding that 80% of singles want to meet people in real life more than pre-pandemic.

The survey also revealed that a third of singles think approaching people in real life is less common now, and a whopping 87% feel that meeting someone at a singles party is more socially acceptable than before.

To help break dry spells and get you back in the mingling game, Inner Circle offers dating with a difference, hosting events in London that bring single people together in ‘spectacular, non-cringey ways’.

From cocktail masterclasses to pop-up beach parties and entire food festivals full of single people, Inner Circle’s parties take the guess-work out of approaching people IRL.

The dating app hosts all sorts of events across the city’s best venues (Picture: Inner Circle)

There are a number of reasons to try the offline-focused app. A team of real people screen new members (for safety, effort, and mindset), so you know you’ll be surrounded by likeminded, unattached people looking for something serious.

Even if you don’t meet your next flame, Inner Circle’s parties are worth it just for the experience.

Among the meet-ups currently in the works is a festival-style event featuring DJs, cocktails, and games, as well as wine tasting and soirees across the city’s best venues.

All you need to do to be a part of the fun is join Inner Circle for free here, grab a ticket to your favourite event, then turn up and prepare to be swept off your feet.

Although it’s still technically dating via an app, you’ll be able to gauge connections in person, meaning sparks can fly right off the bat.

Download the Inner Circle app here.

This article contains affiliate links. We will earn a small commission on purchases made through one of these links but this never influences our experts’ opinions. Products are tested and reviewed independently of commercial initiatives.

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Beijing halts offline sports events from June 13 due to COVID outbreak

Beijing halts offline sports events from June 13 due to COVID outbreak

A medical worker in a protective suit collects a swab from a resident at a makeshift nucleic acid testing site, during a mass testing for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Chaoyang district of Beijing, China June 13, 2022. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

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BEIJING, June 13 (Reuters) – Beijing will suspend all offline sports events starting from June 13 citing high transmission risks of a recent COVID-19 outbreak linked to a bar in the city, Beijing Municipal Bureau of Sports said in a statement on Monday.

As of June 12, some 166 cases have been linked so far to the outbreak at the Chaoyang Heaven Supermarket Bar, which emerged last week.

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Reporting by Albee Zhang and Ryan Woo; Editing by Jacqueline Wong

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Hong Kong’s offline and virtual events platform EventX closes $18M Series B – TechCrunch

Hong Kong’s offline and virtual events platform EventX closes $18M Series B – TechCrunch

As countries ease up on COVID restrictions, activities are going back in person. But the virtual event space continues to attract investors, at least in Asia. Hong Kong-based events management platform EventX said today it has raised another $8 million for its Series B, lifting the total amount secured for this round to $18 million.

The new injection was led by GL Ventures, the early-stage investment arm of Hillhouse Capital. Previous investors include Gaocheng Capital, an investment firm founded by a former Hillhouse partner, and HTC, the Taiwanese electronics giant that has pushed into virtual reality in recent years. EventX declined to disclose its post-money valuation.

The Series B came eight years after EventX was founded, an unusually patient fundraising pace compared to many cash-burning internet firms across the border in mainland China. The company started out by managing real-life events, from supporting user registration to helping attendees exchange virtual business cards. When COVID-19 hit in 2020, it saw an opportunity to go digital, so it developed a new service akin to Hopin, supporting live events like webinars and virtual exhibitions. Today, the platform also has a lead generation function, helping organizers develop new clients and partners through events.

Thanks to pandemic control on in-person events, Hopin became one of the fastest-growing companies in recent memory. But news came last week that the London-based startup had laid off 12% of its staff as it realized post-COVID demand for virtual events would slow. The pandemic was also a boon to EventX; its online attendees in the fourth quarter of 2021 grew by 120%. And even if live events resume their normalcy, the company believes it can cling onto its long-running offline business.

So far, the company has helped organize events in over 100 cities, mostly across Asia, and its platform has served more than five million attendees. Its team of 100 is spread across Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

The startup plans to spend its new proceeds on potential acquisitions, product development, recruitment and expansion in Asia, particularly Taiwan and Southeast Asia. It also has ambitions to bring VR solutions into its event experience by teaming up with its investor HTC.