The Hustle

Cameo, the celebrity shout-out startup, nears $300m valuation

A startup called Cameo that gives fans a way to pay celebrities for video shout-outs is worth around $300m.

May 30, 2019

A startup called Cameo offers celebrity worshippers the next best thing to an autographed left butt cheek: an Instagram name-drop. 

Now, Cameo’s platform — which gives fans a way to pay for personalized plugs from their favorite stars — is finalizing a new funding round (size undisclosed) that will value the company at more than $300m, Axios reports.

People will shell out for celebs

Big stars like Snoop Dogg and Brett Favre will drop your name for $500 while niche YouTuber celebs offer shout-outs for $5 or less.

Cameo is an outgrowth of the influencer economy: The company launched in 2017 when co-founder Steven Galanis saw a Seattle Seahawks superfan wig out after a shout-out and realized that people would pay for the same privilege.

How do the economics work?

Celebrities set their own prices, which range from free for some brand influencers to $2.5k for Caitlyn Jenner. For every Cameo purchased, the company takes a 25% cut — and the celebrity gets the rest.

For most celebs, it seems to be a good deal. Dorinda Medley, a “Real Housewives” star who set her price at $125 per shout-out, makes roughly $2.8k per week for dishing out a few minutes of shout outs.

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