Hawaii Strong: With shows canceled, events industry veteran diversifies his talents

Hawaii Strong: With shows canceled, events industry veteran diversifies his talents

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Before the pandemic hit, anytime there was a sold out crowd, reggae music festival or big time concert, chances are Raymond Ho, Jr. put it all together.

“My father was always around the entertainment business and that’s kind of where I fell into it,” said Ho Jr., founder of TMR Events and the annual MayJah RayJah Music Festival. “Being around it and getting to know the people and that’s the biggest thing in entertainment. It’s a very close network.”

The veteran event promoter and organizer had huge plans for the summer of 2020 ― 60 to 70 shows were lined up before COVID-19 swept through.

“We lost millions last year in revenue,” Ho Jr. said.

[This story is part of HNN’s “Hawaii Strong” series, profiling businesses in the islands adapting to the pandemic and its economic fallout. To suggest a profile, send an email to hawaiistrong@hawaiinewsnow.com.]

“It was a really hectic timeframe for me, just because there’s so many moving parts right and when you contract with all these artists already, a lot of them have your money already right? The hardest part was getting the money back because they know they out of work and they fighting for that, so that was a real challenge for myself.”

With the lights down on packed live shows indefinitely, Ho Jr. ― who always had an interest in the stock market ― shifted his attention to Wall Street.

“Stocks were dropping 60, 70% at that time, some 80%,” Ho Jr. said. “So for me being a businessman, you buy at opportunity times and that’s kind of what I looked at.”

Once he started learning the ropes of the market, he soon realized a new business opportunity was brewing. “I started a discord chat room in late December and opened it up to the public,” Ho Jr. said. “Just me and a few friends five of us in a chatroom talking and then I shared it one day and in six weeks, we got over 3,000 people that signed up for the chat, a free chat room.

“And that’s when it clicked to me that people want to learn this.”

A few months later, he went all in and developed Ray Jr. Trading, a comprehensive mobile application centered on financial education and creating a community conversation on wise investing.

“It’s just learning about financial literacy in general because if you knew what you knew today, when you was 17 and 16, you would have made better decisions when you were 20,” Ho Jr. said. “You wouldn’t buy that expensive car, you would invest your money.”

The subscription-based app offers a number of services including daily reports, guest speakers, courses, and chatrooms.

“I feel like if you learn a technique, a strategy how to swing trade, where to buy it at, how to look at levels, you can invest in the market with educated decisions rather than guessing,” Ho Jr. explained.

Ho Jr. thinks concerts won’t return to pre-COVID levels until 2023, but when the app launches in early May, he’s hoping he’s found a new way to bring people together.

For more information on Ray Jr. Trading including membership information go to rayjrtrading.com

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