Kara Swisher

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Another Science Start-Up, Wittlebee, Gets $2.5 Million in Funding for Kids’ Clothes Club

Wittlebee, a monthly kids’ clothing club that was incubated at Los Angeles area “technology studio” Science, has gotten $2.5 million in funding.

Much like another Science start-up, Dollar Shave Club, Wittlebee ships a custom box of high-quality kids’ clothes to members.

The seed round of funding was led by Rincon, with participation from SoftTech, Google Ventures, Matt Coffin, Crosslink, and Morado.

Wittlebee’s CEO and founder Sean Percival said the money would be used to create a private-label clothing line.

Wittlebee uses stay-at-home parents, who have used the site, as customer service reps. The start-up sends a new order of children’s apparel each month, including onesies, t-shirts, leggings, socks and pants, upping the sizes as the kid grows.

In other words, kind of like a never-ending online Gap.

Here’s the official press release on Wittlebee’s funding:

Wittlebee Raises $2.5 Million Seed Funding Lead By Rincon

Children’s clothing membership service to begin manufacturing private label designs to keep up with growing customer demand

Los Angeles, CA. April 4, 2012 — Wittlebee (www.Wittlebee.com), the affordable children’s clothing monthly membership service backed by technology studio Science Inc., today announces the company raised $2.5 million in seed funding leady by Rincon, with participation from SoftTech, Google Ventures, Matt Coffin, CrossLink, and Morado. Jim Andelman, co-founder and General Partner at Rincon, joins Wittlebee’s board alongside Michael Jones, founder and CEO of Science, and Sean Percival, Wittlebee’s founder and CEO.

Since launching less than two months ago, Wittlebee has experienced accelerated growth, in part because of Science’s track record of quickly scaling ecommerce businesses. The company will use the new investment to build out its executive team and user acquisitions.

Upon joining Wittlebee, customers are connected to a team of mom stylists who work with families to compose boxes of high-quality children’s clothing to meet individual children’s needs. Active kids in warm climates like Miami may receive appropriate t-shirts, shorts and socks whereas infants in Albany receive long-sleeve onesies and cozy pajamas.

“Wittlebee’s recent growth has been tremendous,” said Percival. “Our customer feedback is overwhelmingly positive; we are speaking to an audience of 20,000 highly engaged moms across social media who tell us they’re delighted we’re saving them time and money for all their children’s clothing needs. We plan to use Rincon’s investment to create Wittlebee’s private label clothing line that will truly showcase our commitment to high-quality practical children’s apparel.”

In the coming months, customers will receive a selection of parents’ favorite well-known brands in addition to Wittlebee’s private label. Manufactured both locally in Los Angeles and abroad, the new line represents customers’ wish-list of kids’ must-haves, from high-quality soft fabrics, to a wide color palate, to unique graphic designs. After months of research and testing apparel options through Wittlebee’s social networks, the resulting Wittlebee bespoke label will be a timeless array of apparel basics to carry kids through seasons, activities and all their lifestyle needs.

“For every investment decision we make, we care most about customer value proposition, team, and business model,” said Jim Andelman, Managing Partner at Rincon. “We’ve been tremendously impressed by parents’ positive response to Wittlebee’s offering: they love the selections, they save money and you can’t beat the convenience of clothes showing up right to your door. The e-commerce space is exploding in LA, and we’re very excited to be at the forefront with Wittlebee.”

For more on Wittlebee, please visit www.Wittlebee.com.


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