Based on reports made by a person familiar with the story, Unilever has expressed interest in buying Honest Co., a household products company co-founded by actress, Jessica Alba.
According to the person who asked to remain anonymous as the matter is private, the process is at an early stage.
Honest Co. is also in collaboration with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley on an initial public offering, based on statements made earlier this year by people familiar with the matter.
A spokesman for Unilever refused to comment. Based in Santa Monica, California, Honest Co. failed to reply to a call and email placed outside of normal business hours.
A deal for Honest Co. would come after Unilever’s $1-billion purchase of Dollar Shave Club, a mail-order razor company whose direct-to-consumer subscription model may become applicable to other brands in Unilever’s portfolio, ranging from Ben & Jerry’s ice cream to Dermalogica skin creams. Honest is also in the business of selling items directly from its website through its monthly subscription services.
Since Alba’s involvement in the commencement of the eco-friendly Honest Co. in 2011, the company has grown from selling natural baby products to home cleaning and beauty items online and in stores, not to mention Target Corp and Whole Foods Market Inc.
Last year, Honest Co. was the target of a class-action lawsuit, in which customers alleged that the products were deceptively labeled and comprised of unnatural ingredients.
The Wall Street Journal earlier reported Unilever’s interest in Honest Co. According to the newspaper, the maker of Dove soap is discussing a purchase valued at more than $1-billion.