Hipcamp, the Airbnb for camping, isn’t roughing it with new investors Jay-Z and Will Smith

Harry How/Getty

Camping has already gotten a makeover to become Glamping. Now it’s getting celebrity investors.

On Tuesday, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter and Will Smith announced they were backing campsite booking startup Hipcamp. The startup had officially announced its $US25 million Series B on July 24.

The two rappers-turned-entrepreneurs backed the buzzy startup, commonly referred to as the Airbnb for camping, through their respective venture capital funds Marcy Venture Partners and Dreamers Fund. The specific contribution amounts were not disclosed.

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Andreessen Horowitz led Hipcamp’s July Series B that valued the company at $US127 million, according to Pitchbook data. The startup has raised $US41.6 million in venture funding since 2013.

Hipcamp’s mission, according to a recent Forbes report, is to get more people outside, and offers its users a wide selection of camping, glamping, and RV options on private property, along with real-time availability and review data for federal lands like national parks. Forbes reported that the company is hoping to add listings for campgrounds at state parks in the future.

The investment from Carter and Smith comes as camping has skyrocketed in popularity with younger people looking to escape the deluge of technology in their everyday lives. But a myth persists that people of colour, and specifically young black millennials, have avoided outdoor recreation.

“For a long time, being “outdoorsy” meant you fit a very specific mould,” Hipcamp founder and CEO Alyssa Ravasio wrote in a blog post announcing the news. “Thankfully, that’s changing.”

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