New York City-based KidPass, an online tools for families to discover and book kids’ activities, has secured $5.1 million in Series A funding. Javelin Venture Partners led the round with participation from other investors that included CoVenture, Y Combinator, TIA Ventures, Bionic Fund, Cocoon Ignite Ventures and FJ Labs. In conjunction with the funding, Jed Katz, a managing director at Javelin, and Rachel Jarrett, president of Zola, have been added to KidPass’ board of directors.
Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017 – New York, NY – KidPass, a membership-based online tool for families to discover and book a wide variety of kids activities, has raised $5.1 million in Series A funding. The round was led by Javelin Venture Partners with participation from new and existing investors, including CoVenture, Y Combinator, TIA Ventures, Bionic Fund, Cocoon Ignite Ventures, and FJ Labs among others. In conjunction with the financing, KidPass is also thrilled to announce that Jed Katz, Managing Director at Javelin, and Rachel Jarrett, President of Zola, will be joining their Board of Directors to help advise the company during its next phase of expansion. “We could not have asked for better investors and advisors to partner with to continue building KidPass and further accelerate our growth,” says Solomon Liou, co-founder and CEO of KidPass.
KidPass enables parents to discover thousands of activities for kids of all ages and instantly book them online or via the mobile app, saving them time and money finding and scheduling classes. The company had previously raised $1.2 million in seed funding, bringing their total raised to $6.3 million. The company is backed by top investors and tech luminaries including Kevin Ryan (co-founder of DoubleClick, Business Insider, Gilt Groupe, Zola, MongoDB, Zola, Workframe, Nomad Health) and Joan Barnes (the founder of Gymboree), and was part of the Winter 2017 Y Combinator class.
This financing solidifies KidPass, the largest kids activities booking site in New York, as the market leader. With the Series A funding, KidPass plans to significantly accelerate growth through further investment in its technology platform, as well as expand into new cities including San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington DC, and Chicago, to reach thousands of new families. KidPass is excited to more rapidly pursue its mission of helping families discover and book the best activities for children of all ages across the country.
For kids activity providers, this financing also enables KidPass to further expand its capabilities in helping business owners and instructors with class management software, online registration, scheduling, and payment tools. The company’s new Partner dashboard and class management interface for business owners is still in private beta, but is already being used by instructors on a daily basis to manage their activities.
KidPass was founded by Solomon Liou, Aaron Kaufman, Chhay Chhun, and Olivia Ballvé and launched in January of 2016. In just one year, KidPass has grown to become the largest kids activities booking site in New York. Over 20,000 families have signed up to use KidPass to book thousands of activities across 900 kids activity providers, including Gymboree, Kidville, Music Together, Super Soccer Stars, Physique Swimming, The Craft Studio, Chocolate Works, the Museum of Modern Art, YMCA, JCC, and many more. Over 100,000 activities have already been booked through the KidPass platform to date.
“We started KidPass to solve a need that we had as new parents ourselves, and it’s been incredible to see the KidPass community grow to thousands of parents in New York City alone. Our progress has been a testament to the need that KidPass is filling for parents, and we could not have asked for better investors to partner with to continue building the company,” says Solomon Liou, Co-Founder and CEO of KidPass. “Our Series A raise, and the new investors joining the KidPass team, are a huge endorsement for our mission to dramatically disrupt and improve the rapidly growing kids activities industry.”
“We are very excited to lead the KidPass Series A,” said Jed Katz, Managing Director at Javelin. “KidPass is treasured by busy parents who want to discover the best activities for their kids, get members-only prices, and enjoy a frictionless signup and payment process. But in addition to being a one-stop-shop for all types of kids activities, it’s also an entirely new and improved way for parents to explore their child’s interests through drop-in activities to see what they truly love before fully committing to semester-long programs. We love their smart, scalable business model and look forward to helping the KidPass team expand their valuable service across the country.”
Rachel Jarrett will also be joining the Board of Directors along with Jed Katz from Javelin. Rachel currently serves as President of Zola, an online wedding registry and planning start-up, and brings a wealth of expertise both with e-commerce and the children’s industry. She held previous roles as General Manager of Children’s at Gilt and VP of Kids & Specialty Products at Barnes & Noble. She started her retail career with FAO Schwarz and Toys “R” Us and also recently owned and operated her own kids-focused chocolate store. “I’ve experienced the children’s activities space from all sides of the market – as a parent of two young children, as a children’s activity provider, and as an advisor to the management team at KidPass,” says Rachel. “KidPass is filling a void in a fragmented market and solving real pain-points for parents and providers. They have an exceptional team, a compelling long term vision, and I’m excited to help scale the business as a Board member.”
With this new investment, KidPass aims to establish itself as the go-to resource for parents across the U.S. For parents, this means being able to access the best kids activities, including exclusive classes, in-home activities, and family experiences for KidPass members. For kids activity providers, this means being the best service to help grow their business by getting brand exposure, new customers, and earning incremental revenue with no up-front costs and directly measurable returns versus traditional advertising channels. “We have a lot planned for 2017, and are very excited to further expand our network of amazing partners and kids activities, launch new cities, and continue building a world class team,” says Liou.
KidPass is available on desktop at www.kidpass.com and as a mobile app through the iTunes app store.