Meaning of “attract” in the English Dictionary

"attract" in British English

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attractverb

uk /əˈtrækt/ us /əˈtrækt/

B1 [ T ] (of people, things, places, etc.) to pull or draw someone or something towards them, by the qualities they have, especially good ones:

These flowers are brightly coloured in order to attract butterflies.
The circus is attracting huge crowds/audiences.
The government is trying to attract industry to the area (= to persuade people to place their industry there).
Her ideas have attracted a lot of attention/criticism in the scientific community.

B2 [ T usually passive ] If you are attracted by or to someone, you like them, often finding them sexually interesting:

I'm not physically/sexually attracted to him.

specialized physics When something such as a magnet attracts something else, it pulls it towards it:

Magnets attract iron filings.
Since light has no mass, Newton's equation predicts that it will not be attracted by gravity towards anything.

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(Definition of “attract” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"attract" in American English

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attractverb [ T ]

us /əˈtrækt/

to cause something to come toward something else, or to cause a person or animal to become interested in someone or something:

An open flame attracts moths.
The tennis championship will attract a lot of tourists to the city.
This movie is going to attract a lot of attention.

If someone is attracted to someone else, he or she likes the other person or is interested in that person.

(Definition of “attract” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"attract" in Business English

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attractverb [ T ]

uk /əˈtrækt/ us

to make people want to visit a place or find out more about something:

attract visitors/audiences/fans The exhibition attracted over 10,000 visitors.
attract interest/attention Fuel-cell technology has been around for 150 years, so why is it attracting attention now?
attract sth from sb It was the biggest AIDS meeting ever, attracting 17,000 people from around the world.
attract sb to sth They are trying to attract more holiday-makers to the area.

to make someone want to buy or invest in something:

attract business/investment/funding They're trying to attract foreign investment in the region.
attract sb to sth The high yen attracted investors to South Korean manufacturing shares.

to interest someone and make them want to do something such as join a company:

I was attracted by the opportunity to work abroad.
attract sb to sth What attracted you to this job?

FINANCE if a product or investment attracts a particular charge, you have to pay that charge if you have the product or investment:

Payments by credit card attract a 2% handling charge.
The loan attracts a low rate of interest.

(Definition of “attract” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)