Actress and entrepreneur Jessica Alba and The Honest Company are celebrating as the company makes its public debut on Nasdaq with shares opening over $21, above its $16 initial pricing. Honest was one of the fortunate companies that excelled during the pandemic and saw an already-upward trajectory accelerate its growth.
Nick Vlahos, CEO at Honest, attributed growth over the last year to consumers paying more attention to their health.
"We're a growth business. We grew about 28 percent this past year, however, even prior to that, our core business was growing roughly 20 percent. So with the pandemic what we've seen from a consumer perspective is more consumers interested in health and wellness and they're also orientating towards mission-driven businesses," he told Cheddar.
Vlahos also noted that the growth is likely here to stay, particularly as more consumers shop online. He said more than half of the company's business is through e-commerce transactions with about 45 percent of business coming out of retail locations.
Much of that growth is a credit to Alba's social media presence and her hands-on participation in the company she co-founded in 2011. Alba, acting as the company's chief creative officer, said she's nurtured the business as if it were her "fourth baby."
"As far as social media goes, it really was the strategy around how we wanted to market the company and building community and having a two-way conversation and not talking at someone through TV commercials but really engaging and having a real dialogue with consumers and putting their needs first," she added.
When Alba started the business 10 years ago, she said she'd envisioned a business that had a "more modern approach" and that its natural growth is what led to the company going public. Still, she said today's IPO is a "pinch-me moment."
The company raised more than $400 million in bringing the company public. Vlahos said the funds will be used to continue delivering the highest quality products, expand its offerings, and manage sustainability.
"There's an opportunity for us to continue to innovate and be disruptive in not only the current categories that we're in but also as we look and explore new categories. And then there's a big opportunity for us from a global perspective. Only about 2 percent of our overall business is international, so we have an opportunity to continue to expand and bring this brand really to a global footprint," he said.
The Honest Company's stock rose slightly by the close of markets to $23.