Its name already sounds like something a rapper would come up with, now Viddy actually has some heavyweights from the genre backing it.
Jay-Z‘s Roc Nation and Will Smith‘s Overbrook Entertainment are among a slew of high-profile investors who’ve recently put their money into the popular video-sharing app, the New York Times reports.
The companies came on board Monday as part of Viddy’s second round of venture funding. The first round was announced in early February and included investments from several more traditional venture capitalists.
In a move that Brett O’Brien, one of Vidddy’s founders, says is strategic, Jay-Z and Smith join other celebrity backers including international pop superstar Shakira and tech titans Biz Stone of Twitter, one of the founders of styling service Shoedazzle (not Kim Kardashian), and a founder of online marketing unit Omniture, among others.
O’Brien hopes the famous affiliations will help increase the service’s reach.
“Shakira has 40 million fans on Facebook and she is huge in Latin America,” he told the Times. “I’m pretty sure this will help us get bigger in Latin America.”
Basically an Instagram for videos, Viddy allows users to capture 15-second videos and add effects using “production packages” which are similar to Instagram’s color treatment filters but with music and transitions. The free app is currently available in Apple’s App Store and the Android Market.
This is not the first business connection Smith and Jay-Z have made. The moguls are also among the primary investors in beauty product line Carol’s Daughter; are partnering on a remake of classic film Annie; and helped bring Fela!, a musical about Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti, to Broadway.
Earlier this week, Jay-Z also launched Empire, a Facebook game based on his life.
Big business, kid.