Right after racing to the top of the App Store charts, Viddy just announced that it has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from a long list of celebrities — not just tech celebrities, but also the kind that non-techies have heard of.
Here’s who invested: Twitter co-founder Biz Stone, Omniture founder Josh James, Skull Candy chairman Jeff Kearl, Roc Nation (the record label and entertainment company co-founded by Jay-Z), Overbrook Entertainment (founded by Will Smith and manager James Lassiter), ShoeDazzle founder Brian Lee, professional skateboarder Rob Dyrdek, soccer star Gerard Pique, and (I’m quoting from the press release here) “pop culture icon” Shakira.
Viddy actually raised a $6 million Series A back in February from a more traditional group of venture investors, but co-founder and CEO Brett O’Brien told The New York Times that bringing on celebrities was a way to help the service maintain its momentum. He noted, for example, that “Shakira has 40 million fans on Facebook and she is huge in Latin America. I’m pretty sure this will help us get bigger in Latin America.”
The company (which allows you to shoot 15-second videos from your smartphone, customize them movie/music clips, and share them), launched in April 2011. It credits its recent growth to the effort it put into recruiting celebrities and influencers, plus its recently launched Facebook Timeline app.