Red Tricycle, A Digital City Guide For Parents, Raises $1.5 Million From Bob Pittman And Others

As a parent in New York, I’m often at a loss as to how to entertain my children. Do we shoot trap over the Brooklyn Promenade or hit the city dump to look at rats? Do we go for a swim in the Gowanus or do we visit the beach to dig up needles? With endless possibilities comes endless indecision! Thankfully, there’s Red Tricycle.

Founded by Jaqui Boland, an SF-based mom and marketing pro who worked at Meredith and Reed Elseveir, the site is a reaction to her new mom-hood and her desire to help other parents out there navigate the urban parenting jungle.

“I was pregnant with my first child, and was freaking out about how my urban lifestyle would change, so I started doing some research on kid-friendly music venues, restaurants, and museums,” said Boland. “I realized their was a whole new city to explore through the lens of new parenthood. I put my discoveries into an email and sent it out to friends. At the time, I wasn’t sure if I had found a new hobby, or was building a business to scale. It took several years before Red Tricycle evolved into a scalable business model.”

The $1.5 million is led by Maveron and angels include Bob Pittman, Jason Calacanis, Dave McClure, and Darrell Cavens at Zulily. Calacanis, for his part, became a brand evangelist after searching for email lists for parents and then approached Boland to invest.

“The common denominator in all these scenarios is that all of these people are moms and dads and have an amazing affinity for and loyalty to our product,” said Boland.

The company has seen 400,000 subscriptions in six cities and 1 million pageviews a month. National advertisers include Disney, Old Navy, and Microsoft. The company differentiates from all the other email newsletters by collecting curated content just for parents.

“Good local content is hard work, but as a parent, it’s priceless,” said Boland.