Mr. Galanis, a 2010 Duke University graduate, recruited a fellow alumnus and software engineer, Devon Townsend, to build it. In the spring of 2017, the BookCameo.com website launched with a tweet from Mr. Marsh, promising videos for about $20; Vine celebrities such as Tori Spelling and Ivan Breen joined later that year. (Mr. Blencowe, 37, and Mr. Townsend, 33, also a co-founder, still work at the company.)
For Mr. Galanis, Cameo, which is based in his hometown, Chicago, felt like the company the trio set out to build. She and Mr. Blencowe were fresh off a short-lived producing career. (Mr. Galanis still highlights his IMDb credits, which include a TV show called SAF3, pronounced “safe,” about an elite rescue task force.) Mr. Townsend also posts short, ephemeral videos, on Vine. Was a star. Application.
“We lived in this world,” Mr. Galanis said. “We didn’t build this business by accident.”
This article is based on interviews with Mr. Galanis and more than 30 current and former Cameo employees, investors and advisors, as well as internal documents, screenshots and photographs.
Mr. Galanis sports a close-cropped beard and often wears polo or Cameo-branded shirts and baseball caps. He’s a confident pitchman who sees himself as an ultra-connector, spicing up conversations with references to business leaders like Elon Musk whom he admires.
He pointed to a 13-year-old college newspaper profile of the events company he ran at Duke, titled “The Mayor of Main Street.” He added that it offers “very important” context as to why he was able to produce the cameo. Article, at the top of which is a photo of Mr. Galanis giving a thumbs-up while drinking Bush Light, describing how he made his name by befriending local venues and organizing large parties such as beer-pong events, which was described as innovative Was seen. The event took place on a weeknight at Shooters, a venue that was usually a sweaty dance club with a cage. (He also took credit for the “April Showers” party, at which coeds were in wet T-shirts.)