The Honest Company, the environmentally friendly hygiene brand started by actress Jessica Alba, is looking to go public, reports Bloomberg. Valued at $1.7 billion, the startup is currently in talks with Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, though its IPO timeline will take into account how tech companies—many of which have recently seen falling stock prices—are faring in the market.
Alba, one of Fast Company's Most Creative People in 2012, founded Honest Co. four years ago, to create a line of eco-friendly baby care products. The startup has since expanded to include all-natural makeup, skincare, and home cleaning products.
"Our community are those that are looking for an alternative—an alternative to what we deem unsafe products," CEO and cofounder Brian Lee told Fast Company last year. "So they're looking for a healthier lifestyle. They're looking for products that are nontoxic, that are free of harsh chemicals. And I think people are surprised, believe it or not, when it comes to a natural, organic, nontoxic formulation that really works."
Lee has divulged his intention to take the company public since 2014, according to Bloomberg.
But even putting aside the flailing stock market, Honest Co. may want to hold off on going public for another reason: 2015 was a bit of a rocky year for the company. Honest Co. drew a slew of complaints last August when sunburned customers said its sunscreen had failed to protect their skin. The company eventually altered its formula but insisted that the product met FDA standards, and that the number of complaints was negligible when compared against units sold.
In September, Honest Co. was also slapped with a $5 million lawsuit that accused the company of slipping unnatural ingredients into products like diapers and hand soap; yet again, the company's response was dismissive, deeming the allegations "baseless and without merit."