Why should you pore over dozens of Yelp reviews to find a daycare provider you can trust with your most precious possession, your child?
Well, you shouldn’t have to, according to CareLuLu. The company recently graduated from 500 Startups’ accelerator program, and today it’s announcing that it has raised $1.7 million in seed funding.
Just like what ApartmentList did for apartment properties, Angie’s List and Pro.com did for home improvement professionals, and Healthcare.com did for health insurance, CareLuLu wants to be a trusted specialty service for daycare and preschool options. Parents can search and filter through participating providers based on their needs (location, cost, etc.), compare options, and even book tours right through CareLuLu’s site.
Providers can list on CareLuLu for free, although the company offers premium paid services such as professional photography that providers can use on their CareLuLu profiles, showing up at the top of search results, and so on, which is also where it gets its revenue. The “Verified” tier also includes an in-depth review from CareLuLu, which parents can trust when doing their research.
Cofounders and husband and wife Patrick Matos and Evgeniya Usmanova came up with the idea after being frustrated with the lack of such a service when they first moved to Washington, D.C. and had to find a daycare for their daughters. While there are several sites for finding nannies and babysitters, such as Care.com and UrbanSitter, there aren’t as many resources when it comes to daycare and preschool programs (Care.com, for example, does include these services, but it spans several categories of care providers like nannies and elderly care).
For now, CareLuLu is only available in Washington, D.C., although the company will use its new funding to expand into new cities. Khosla Ventures led this round, with Crunchfund, The Startup Factory, 500 Startups, and others also chipping in.
CareLuLu was founded in 2013 by Matos, Usmanova, and Gabriel Marques.