Are Virtual Event Companies In Trouble Now that ‘In Person’ Events Are Back?

Are Virtual Event Companies In Trouble Now that 'In Person' Events Are Back?

Most countries have lifted their pandemic restrictions, venues are able to host large events and people are travelling again. But how will this affect virtual event companies?

A recent report on the Financial Times (paywalled) reports that Hopin is struggling. During the various covid lock downs, the virtual event company enjoyed much success and huge expansion.

However, according to a report on Elite News, the company had at one time more than 15,000 monthly events. That figure has now dropped to less than 500. Not only that, they have recently laid off 12% of their work force.

Is this a one off, a company that bet on the pandemic but it didn’t pay off? Or is this a general trend that all virtual event platforms are now facing?

It could be that these platforms, with Hopin being an extreme example, have not planned for the return of face to face events and not changed their strategies to suit. Or they simply hoped that users would stick around.

But there may be more to it, is the Hopin platform still meeting the needs of it users? Keith Johnston from Plannerwire thinks there’s a problem…

I find it hard to believe that Hopin’s issues are simply the downturn in virtual events as people go back to in-person. I have two clients that have moved off of Hopin to more robust platforms with a cheaper price points. Since they are hosting more virtual than ever, this may be a more complex story.

The Israeli based Vii Events is currently diving deep in to the metaverse and their platform is evolving. Which explains why they are gaining a lot of positive attention.

In the near future, we may see some virtual event platforms fall by the way side. There will be more consolidation. Companies bought up so extra services can be tagged on and to acquire the talent and technology behind them.