Wall Street Journal
May 6, 2015
By Yuliya Chernov
Cricket’s Circle, which offers a baby registry and helps pregnant women decide which items they need to purchase, received backing from East Coast and West Coast investors in a $2.25 million seed round.
Rachel Blumenthal, chief executive and founder of the New York startup, said that when she was pregnant three years ago she sunk “countless hours” researching what she needed to buy. The 40 spreadsheets she received from more experienced mothers weren’t that helpful.
That was the inspiration for Cricket’s Circle, which launched its product recommendation site in January 2014 and its baby registry and e-commerce functionality in January of this year. The company declined to say how many users it has now.
The site recommends just three items in each category, from strollers to burp cloths.
“Generally in the market, you’re seeing endless information and bottomless choice, which leads to paralysis of choice. We believe less is more,” Ms. Blumenthal said.
Forerunner Ventures, a San Francisco seed investment fund, and Lerer Hippeau Ventures, a New York seed fund, co-led the round, which also included participation from General Catalyst Ventures and Box Group.
Lerer Hippeau Ventures is also an investor in eyeglass company Warby Parker, co-founded and run by Ms. Blumenthal’s husband, Neil Blumenthal. Ms. Blumenthal said that her husband doesn’t get too involved in her business. “Sometimes I wish he gave more unsolicited advice,” she said.
Cricket’s Circle personalizes shopping recommendations and works with retailers to fulfill orders. It plans to get a commission from each sale, but isn’t yet recording revenue, Ms. Blumenthal said.
The startup is currently serving parents with children from newborn to toddler years. Its target customers are urban, upper middle-class, aged between 26 and 40 and are new or expectant parents.
Because Cricket’s gets information about its customers at the very early stages of parenting, it hopes to use the data later, to offer them more shopping opportunities and other services as they continue parenting, according to Ms. Blumenthal.
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