When you're trying to raise millions for a startup without an app or even details besides a plan to sell "affordable physical products" (imagine all the whiteboarding it took to come up with that descriptor) it helps to know the right people.
Today, "Punky Brewster" actress Soleil Moon Frye and ex-IAC executive Kara Nortman launched a new company called Moonfrye and announced a $2.5 million funding round, picking up investment from GRP’s Mark Suster and Google’s Kevin Rose.
Rose and his wife happen to be friends of Frye's. But the child star's tech connections don't end there. She's married to producer Jason Goldberg, who cofounded Katalyst Films with celebrity act-vestor Ashton Kutcher. You can—and should!—thank Katalyst for movies like the time-bending thriller The Butterfly Effect. You can also find Frye regularly tweeting at Chris Sacca, posting Instas with the founder of Instagram to her 1.5 million Twitter followers, or getting Eric Schmidt to show up at her boutique opening.
While at IAC, Nortman, her cofounder, oversaw underwhelming mid-aught stalwarts like Citysearch and Urbanspoon.
Moonfyre will be focused on the mommy market and "offer digital and physical DIY (do-it-yourself) craft experiences to families." Think of it as a Brit + Co. (the DIY duct tape recommendations engine run by the wife of Facebook mafioso Dave Morin) for kids or a GOOP for household products, like this Moonfrye guide to disrupting paper with shaving cream.
Frye's self-promotional chops may actually be more impressive that some of the folks of her advisory board, which includes Randi Zuckerberg and Gina Bianchini, former CEO of cofounder Ning, which scored the cover of Fast Company before crashing and burning.
Previously, [Frye] co-founded what she calls the first eco-friendly baby store in LA, The Little Seed. Later, she developed a product line exclusively for Target and is currently the big box retailer’s Mommy Ambassador. She also is a regular contributor to The Today Show on the topic of parenting, and has written two books on the subject titled “Happy Chaos,” and “Let’s Get This Party Started” (to be published in October).
For the past two years, Frye has been building an online community for parents at Moonfrye.com. The company will not release public traffic data and hasn't enabled Quantcast measurement. When we tried to look up the numbers on Compete, it said, "This site has relatively low traffic."
If the startup world were subject to The Butterfly Effect, these people definitely got the good parallel universe.