English entrepreneur Ben Bechar holds a master’s degree in mechatronics and robotics engineering from the University of Leeds but currently works in the music industry. Originally from Leeds, he left his home country to found music tech startup Eshac Entertainment in New York. Bechar realized how so many amazing and deserving artists never “make it” as there are only a handful of people who decide who gets signed. The music industry is more about connections and money rather than talent, but Bechar is looking to change the fact. His solution? Eshac.com, a music social network where fans decide who gets signed.
“If the fans are the ones deciding who gets signed rather than the few gatekeepers, then the doors are open to some incredible discoveries,” he says.
Eshac stands for “Every Song Has a Chance.” On the site, artists create a profile, upload their songs, and share their music to the world. Actions such as inviting existing fans, friends, and family to become their fans on Eshac increases their rating level. View counts and member ratings also boost rating levels, and rewards such as being able to upload more songs are unlocked at different levels. Once an artist reaches rating level 5, they get the opportunity to record a song at a professional recording studio and sell it online. When a musician gets to level 10, they receive a full recording contract with Eshac Entertainment. Since Eshac is not a competition, there is no limit to the number of bands who can earn a record deal.
Bechar, who is currently working on version two of the site with his team, believes that networking within and without one’s industry is essential to entrepreneurial success as “everyone has value.” He also believes in helping others, which is just what he’s doing with Eshac.