Merchant Innovation

Baby Registry E-Tailer Showered With $2.25M

Cricket’s Circle, an eCommerce platform with product reviews on baby and maternity products which also does baby shower registries, received backing from investors in a $2.25 million seed round, reports TechCrunch.

Cricket’s Circle’s funding round was co-led by Forerunner Ventures, based in San Francisco and Lerer Hippeau Ventures, based in New York. It also included General Catalyst and BoxGroup.

The eCommerce platform, founded by Rachel Blumenthal and launched in January 2014, is paired with recommendations on what the customer should buy and why, with a “must have” or “nice to have” icon on top of the page. Playmats, for instance, will see the comments “washable or wipe clean” and “stores easily,” and categorized as “nice to have.” The reviews come from a group of 200 women who have tested and rated each product. The site offers around 1,000 products, serving and targeting upper-middle class parents with children from newborn to toddler years.

Babies are good for business. A little over 4 million babies were born in the U.S. in 2014. Their parents spent between $10,000 and $14,000 on food, clothes and diapers. All in all, babies add between $40 billion and $56 billion to the U.S. economy. So competition in the baby sector is fierce. Amazon bought out its rival Diapers.com for $550 million in 2010 after all attempts at competing with the online children’s products (and soap) marketplaces failed.

Cricket Circle’s $2.25 million in additional funds will help improve the platform’s personalization technology, backed up by data on Cricket Circle’s customers, who often start their shopping experience at the very early stages of their parenting experience. The company hopes to continue expanding its product base as the parents’ kids grow older.

In the future, the eCommerce site plans to get a commission from each sale, but isn’t yet recording revenue, Blumenthal said. The company will recruit 4 to 5 new seniors in the next few months to help in business and product development and operations.

The company’s user numbers and sales figures have not gone public as of yet. Its subscriber base, however, reports TechCrunch, is increasing by 30.25 percent on a monthly basis, with users spending 4.5 minutes on the site on average – and subscriber retention is 99.7 percent.

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