Detroit is recognized globally for its contributions to the music industry. From Motown to techno, the city of Detroit is responsible for much of the music we enjoy and love today.
With such a rich musical history, it only made sense for TechTown client, Waref Hawasli, to launch his company OPNR in the heart of the city.
OPNR is a website and app that helps local musicians find gigs. For musicians and band managers, OPNR offers an electronic press kit generator, allowing musicians to present themselves professionally when submitting for an opportunity. A search-and-submit function navigates musicians to current opening set and other performance opportunities based on location and genre.
Hawasli lived in Dubai for eight years where he served as CEO and publisher of Rolling Stone Middle East. He eventually returned to Detroit to pursue business consulting and real estate development.
OPNR was born out of Hawasli’s desire to create a system built to connect local musicians with local concert organizers looking for support for their local events.
“There is such a large community of underserved and underrepresented talent in Detroit and Michigan. The independent community lacks resources and we want to assist with that burden,” said Hawasli.
In its first few months, the platform saw nearly 1,000 users including musicians and organizers, listed more than 40 active or confirmed opportunities and connected 16 musicians with performances.
Hawasli found it essential to include Detroit partners in his entrepreneur journey including TechTown’s Business Incubator Center.
“I was connected to TechTown through Bonnie Fahoome. TechTown has been great. They were a great soundboard for me. Paul was awesome and really helpful. He helped connect me with local, regional and nationwide organizations and individuals that align with my mission and now I’m nurturing those relationships,” Hawasli raved.
Today, Waref is focused on growing and refining his business to serve as a valuable resource for local artists.
“From a creative perspective and economic perspective, we’re just grinding right now. I hope we can make an impact on not only a local but global scale.”
To find out more about OPNR, visit www.opnrmusic.com.