Will Smith, Kevin Hart, a16z back virtual events startup Run the World

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Will Smith and Kevin Hart pose backstage at the 2016 MTV Movie Awards at Warner Bros. Studios on April 9, 2016 in Burbank, California.

Jason Kempin | MTV1415 | Getty Images for MTV

Xiaoyin Qu never predicted how relevant her app would become in a pandemic. The former Facebook employee originally set up Run The World, an online events platform, to reduce the barriers involved in attending big in-person conferences.

She caught a glimpse of the sudden surge in demand for virtual events back in February, as health fears around the coronavirus outbreak resulted in the cancellation of several big

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