Actor Ashton Kutcher was one of the first celebrities to embrace social media as a way to build his fan base. But outside the spotlight, he's also been a prolific investor in tech startups including Uber. Kutcher is among a growing number of Hollywood actors and musicians who have turn their attention up north in recent years, pouring their personal wealth into some of Silicon Valley's hottest startups.
The trend isn't new. Actor Ashton Kutcher and U2 frontman Bono have been heavily investing in tech for years and have even set up their own venture capital firms. One thing to keep in mind about this trend: it has coincided with what tech financiers are calling an investment bubble in tech.
CB Insights, crunched the numbers and came up with a list of the most active celebrity investors and their portfolio companies. Just because they put money into lots of companies doesn't mean they are the most successful investors, or course. But here are the top 5 Hollywood financiers of Silicon Valley:
1. Ashton Kutcher is by far the most prolific tech investor in Hollywood, with seed and venture capital investments in a total of 70 startups, according to CB Insights. His investments include AirBnB, FourSquare, and Zenefits. The 37-year-old began investing in tech in 2009 and has gained deep connections in the industry. He holds the title of engineer for laptop maker Lenovo and introduced a tablet with the firm that was poorly received by consumers. (He played Steve Jobs in the movie biopic in 2013, which also flopped). He co-founded venture firm Sound Ventures -- which also counts Madonna and U2 manager Guy Oseary as partners -- seed investment firm A-Grade.
2. Nasir "Nas" Jones counts more than 30 portfolio companies including DropBox and Lyft. The rapper has made his investments through a Los Angeles-based venture fund Queensbridge Ventures, where he serves as a partner. Nas, who has 8 Platinum albums, has made some entertainment related investments, including in live broadcasting app Meerkat. But his investments are diverse, including in BitCoin firm CoinBase and financial services firm Robinhood.
3. Troy Carter has managed the careers of musicians including Lady Gaga but his tech investments -- all personal seed investments -- have been very much behind the scenes. Carter has been an early investor in Uber, wireless power firm uBeam, and streaming music firm Songza, which was purchased by Google in 2014. According to CrunchBase database, Carter has made personal investments in 27 firms since 2011.
4. Bono has long been a close partner to tech firms -- though his latest venture with Apple didn't go so well (if you recall, U2's 2014 album automatically downloaded onto new Apple iPhones, annoying a number of consumers who didn't want the band's music). He's had more success as managing partner of Elevation Partners, a private equity firm with $1.9 billion in assets under management. Elevation's investments include Facebook, Yelp and Sonos.
5. When Jared Leto isn't acting or performing with his band Thirty Seconds to Mars, he is playing tech financier. The 43-year-old has made about 13 personal seed investments into firms such as Reddit, marketing software firm Radius and Zenefits, according to database CrunchBase.
Want to know more? Here's CB's list of 13 most active investors: