Being a dad is awesome. It’s the absolute greatest experience I’ve had in life. Sometimes it’s difficult to juggle work, travel, and the kids’ schedules all at once. Being a single dad only makes these things even harder. Being a VC, I’m constantly looking for new products and technologies that can help. Given this vantage point, I have a unique perspective on certain on-demand services. We’ve seen a ton of companies that don’t solve pain points for users and many that I found to be incredibly helpful given my two kids and my busy schedule. Companies like Blue Apron and Plated let me easily cook healthier meals for my kids rather than ordering in takeout, Shuddle (once it launches in NYC) would give me an easier way to transport my kids to and from their various extracurricular activities, and Shyp allows my son Jacob to ship out items from his eBay business without having to leave our apartment every morning to run to the post office.
From the moment I heard about what Anand and Vivian were building at Trusted I wanted to be involved with the company. Not only was finding sitters a big pain point for me, but there were times when I needed one at the last second and called every family member and friend I knew because I didn’t trust the other options that are out there. A quick search on YouTube for “care.com cam” will tell you all you need to know about how difficult and dangerous this can be. I like to tell entrepreneurs we invest in painkillers, not vitamins and this is the morphine of painkillers.
It’s a very big problem, and one that has been almost impossible to solve in the past. However, advances in background checking technology and the smartphone have opened up the possibilities to build something really special. By carefully screening and recruiting sitters (starting with nursing students), Trusted is building a brand that parents trust leaving their kids with a for a few hours.
Coming from companies such as Threadflip, Amazon and Microsoft; Anand and Vivian are well-equipped to handle this market (check out Anand’s post on marketplaces for the First Round Review). It’s early, it’s a big vision, but the pain is real and we’re betting that they’re the team to solve it.
We’re proud to be investors in Trusted alongside Kleiner Perkins Edge, Slow Ventures, Great Oaks, and the Haystack Fund. Personally, I can’t wait until the NYC launch.