Jay-Z and Will Smith Back Rent-to-Own Startup Landis With Funding

The rent-to-own firm raised $165 million from a wide range of investors, including the investment arm of Jay-Z’s Roc Nation and Will Smith’s Dreamers VC.

Jay and Will

Image via Getty/Kevin Mazur

Jay and Will

Will Smith and Jay-Z are helping to make homeownership more accessible.

According to Forbes, Smith’s Dreamers VC and Arrive, the investment arm of Jay’s Roc Nation, are among the companies that participated in a Series A capital raise for Landis Technologies—a startup that aims to guide renters on their path to owning a home. The $165 million funding round was led by Signia Venture Partners, and reportedly included investments from founders of Plaid, Cash App, Ethos, Instacart, Front, Flatiron Health, and Tango

Landis, founded by Cyril Berdugo and Tom Petit, assists would-be homeowners who are not in an immediate position to buy. The startup purchases a property and rents it to the client as they attempt to build their credit, save for a down payment, and minimize their debt. Once the renters qualify for a mortgage, they can buy the property at a predetermined price up to two years after Landis bought it.

“What makes Landis unique is our ability to coach anyone to homeownership,” Berdugo said in a press release. “This new funding will allow us to help more Americans on their path to homeownership by expanding to new states, hiring talent nationwide and providing a better experience to our clients and partner agents and lenders.”

Landis currently operates in 29 cities across 11 states, including North Carolina, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia, but the company plans to expand its presence to 20 states in 2022.

“We are proud to have invested in Landis,” Smith said. “Landis is an innovative company that also has a social mission we are aligned with. We are excited to be part of a journey that helps Americans achieve homeownership through financial education.”

You can learn more about Landis here.

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