Alice.com, a Madison, Wis.-based online platform for connecting manufacturers and consumers in the packaged goods market, has raised $4.3 million in first-round funding. Kegonsa Capital Partners and DaneVest Tech Fund co-led the round.
Alice.com, the latest start-up from serial entrepreneurs Brian Wiegand and Mark McGuire, today announced it has secured $4.3 million in first round funding. The round was led jointly by private equity angel funds Kegonsa Capital Partners (www.kegonsapartners.com) and DaneVest Tech Fund (www.danevestcapital.com).
Alice.com is developing a new online retail platform that better connects manufacturers and customers in the giant consumer packaged goods market. Complete details on Alice are not being disclosed until the company’s public launch in the Spring of 2009. The company’s offer will focus on non-food related household essentials with a business model that is inspired by two key themes: 1) consumers lack a convenient, cost effective way to buy household essentials online today; and, 2) consumer packaged goods companies need a fresh alternative to the big brand, bricks and mortar retailer model that is supported by traditional mass market advertising.
Alice is the fourth start-up from founders Brian Wiegand and Mark McGuire, who most recently sold Jellyfish.com to Microsoft Corporation in September, 2007, which became the basis for Microsoft’s Live Search cashback program. The pair left their roles at Microsoft in June, 2008, to found Alice.com.
“The sale of consumer staples like trash bags, toothpaste and bathroom tissue is a huge untapped eCommerce market that is ripe for innovation” said Brian Wiegand, CEO and Co-Founder of Alice. “We are thrilled to be leveraging the Internet to change the way consumers supply their homes with these consumer staples. I never thought I’d say the words toilet paper and Web 2.0 in the same sentence, but our team is working hard make this kind of combination the next great innovation online.”
“Today’s consumer doesn’t watch 30 second television spots, and they expect ultimate choice, convenience, and personalization from their brands,” said Mark McGuire, President and Co-Founder of Alice. “Alice will give packaged goods companies a new kind of efficient and open retail platform that will allow them to engage consumers in targeted, personalized ways and eliminate the waste and mass-market feel of traditional brick and mortar retail channels.”
For more information on Alice, please sign up for e-mail updates at Alice.com. The founders are also documenting their start-up efforts at their blog, Flywheel (http://flywheelblog.com).
Alice.com is developing a new online retail platform that better connects manufacturers and consumers in the giant consumer packaged goods market. The company is working on changing the way consumers shop for household essentials, giving them a convenient, personalized and cost-effective means to buy these products online. Co-founders Brian Wiegand and Mark McGuire have a serial entrepreneur track record that includes three previous start-up successes: Bizfilings.com (sold to Wolters-Kluwer in 2001), NameProtect.com (sold to Corporation Services Corporation in 2007), and Jellyfish.com (sold to Microsoft Corporation in 2007).