Santa Monica-based online retailer Figs Inc., which makes stylish scrubs for medical professionals, went public on May 27.
And now privately held Jaanuu Inc., an El Segundo-based scrubs manufacturer that also specializes in direct-to-consumer digital sales of fitted medical gear, is angling to do the same.
Figs raised $581 million with its initial public offering in late May, giving the company a shot at a larger slice of the highly fragmented health care apparel market, which by some estimates is worth $12 billion.
According to Figs co-founder and Co-Chief Executive Trina Spear, however, a Frost & Sullivan study commissioned by the company reports that the global market is nearly seven times larger.
“At the end of the day, people want to look good to perform their best,” Spear said.
Spear and Figs co-founder and Co-Chief Executive Heather Hasson explained that their scrubs compete against rivals on the basis of quality, innovation, style, price and brand image.
Investors cheered Figs during its Wall Street debut. The company’s stock opened nearly 29% above the IPO price of $22, giving Figs a valuation of roughly $4.57 billion.
Figs has a few distinctions. It was the first company to use Robinhood Markets Inc.’s online trading platform to distribute IPO shares to retail investors, and it was the first public company with all-women co-founders and co-CEOs.
And, according to Hasson, “This is the first health care apparel company to go public.”
Competitors in the health care apparel market include Chatsworth-based Careismatic Brands Inc. and Gardena-based Barco Uniforms Inc.
Jaanuu, meanwhile, is nipping at Figs’ heels.
The company has raised $25 million since stepping into the fashionable end of the scrubs market in 2013. Jaanuu has attracted big-name backers, including billionaire Ron Burkle of West Hollywood-based Yucaipa Cos., as well as the family office that manages wealth for the family behind luxury retail giant Nordstrom Inc.
Jaanuu co-founder and Chief Executive Shaan Sethi worked alongside Burkle in his private equity shop from 2007 to 2009.
“As we expected when founding Jaanuu, the public markets would validate and have an appetite for the digital disruptors in our multi-billion-dollar category,” Sethi said.