Google Capital just invested $46.35 million in Care.com, a site that helps people hire babysitters, housekeepers, pet watchers, and more.
This is the first time that Google Capital — the growth-phase investment arm of parent company Alphabet — has bought a stake in a publicly traded company.
While the deal just happened, the relationship between the two companies began back in 2011 when Google, known for its generous benefits, started offering free Care.com membership employees.
Laela Sturdy, the partner at Google Capital who led the investment and will now sit on Care.com’s board, tells Business Insider that she started using the product right away.
“I first started using Care in 2011 after the birth of my first child and found a great caregiver through the platform,” she says. “And since then, I’ve used the back-up care services when I’ve had my childcare fall through and I still need to be at work.”
Sturdy now has two kids, 3 and 5.
Since Care.com went public in 2014, Google Capital was impressed by its growth and “Google-sized aspirations.”
As a big fan of the product, Sturdy met with founder and CEO Shiela Lirio Marcelo. The two agreed that an investment would benefit them both, with Care getting access to Google’s team of experts along with its nice chunk of change and Google seeing opportunity for a great return on investment.
Care sold newly issued shares of preferred stock to Google at $10.50 a pop and used the money to buy ~3.7 million shares from early investor Matrix Partners at $8.25 a share.
Marcelo says that after her first meeting with Sturdy, who has been at Google for about a decade, the deal moved “pretty quick”:
“She had me at me hello when she said she loved the product.”
Google Capital’s other investments include private companies Duolingo, Glassdoor, Thumbtack, and SurveyMonkey.
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