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Muslim dating app Muzz co-founder collects £2.75M for new calendar app to plan events through chats


Onin, a London-based calendar app that seamlessly integrates with chat apps, has raised £2.75 million in seed funding from Octopus Ventures (which recently backed Flocks). 

The investment will be used to scale Onin, further develop its features, and expand its London-based team. Onin is expanding its three-person London-based team and is hiring for positions across engineering, product, and marketing.

The app has launched on the App Store today, and the company plans to launch Android later this year. Previously, the company raised an initial £750K pre-seed round in the summer of 2020 from Hambro Perks and angel investors, including Matt Clifford of Entrepreneur First and Ryan Brodie, founder of Onin. 

To date, the company has secured £3.5M in funding. Earlier this year, Onin launched early access to 1,000 public users ahead of its official launch this week.

Ryan Brodie, Founder and CEO of Onin, said, “Across my career there’s been one theme – building technology that brings people together. From apps that helped promote events to ones that found you a date, the calendar has always been central but disconnected. Calendars live outside the conversations that drive them and weren’t designed for the social lives we live today. Onin is solving this problem. Our vision is to build a social world without fragmentation.”

The creator of Muzz 

Ryan Brodie, a serial entrepreneur and angel investor, founded the company after building three app-based businesses. Muzz, an app for Muslim dating, was co-founded by him previously. 

Brodie is joined by co-founder David Adler, a former founder and CTO who turned down lead roles with Spotify and Amazon to build Onin. Late last year, Imi Read joined the team as Head of Product Marketing to spearhead the product’s launch and growth.

The company’s research shows that most people ask when is a good time when planning an event, but then have to leave the conversation to set up the time. 

In order to solve this problem, Onin aims to integrate every calendar and chat app, so that users can access their calendars from any app, including WhatsApp, Messenger, Instagram, Telegram, and even Airbnb. After all, compared to social networks, chat apps are 20 percent bigger and have a faster response time.

Onin combines calendar features, such as events, scheduling, and notifications, with social features, such as chats, groups, usernames, and invitations. 

Every Onin event has a dedicated and secure chat room for participants, and every event, message, and user profile is encrypted end-to-end. Such details are only visible to the recipient and user. Currently, Onin is only available for iOS users and is free to use. The app is patent-pending with 40 claims to invention. 

Brodie continued, “We’re thrilled to be launching Onin on the App Store today. Our team has worked tirelessly to create a calendar integration that is intuitive, seamless, and accessible across all your favourite apps. We’re excited to share it with the world, and we can’t wait to hear feedback as we continue to iterate and improve upon our solution.”

Karan Mehta, Early Stage Investor at Octopus Ventures, added, “Today, services like WhatsApp are used beyond checking in with our family and friends. We use these apps to manage multiple aspects of our personal and professional lives – but the calendar is missing and causing friction. Onin elegantly solves this problem. Ryan is a visionary leader and a magnet for exceptional talent. We’re excited to see what he and the team accomplish together in the coming years.”

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