The application process for Walmart’s seventh annual Open Call is open, and the company invites entrepreneurs dreaming of landing their U.S.-manufactured products on Walmart shelves to apply for the opportunity to meet with Walmart buyers on Oct. 1, 2020, via virtual pitch meetings, announced the company.
According to the retail giant, the deadline to apply to participate in this year’s Open Call for U.S.-manufactured products is Aug. 10. The application and additional information about the event are available via Walmart-jump.com.
The event for entrepreneurs, scheduled for October 1, kicks off Walmart’s celebration of U.S. Manufacturing Month and will include similar programming to previous years.
In addition to one-on-one pitch meetings with Walmart buyers, participants will have an opportunity to hear directly from Walmart executives and learn from company leaders during smaller breakout sessions designed to inform, empower and encourage supplier-hopefuls.
“During this year of unprecedented challenges for U.S. businesses, Walmart remains committed to sourcing products made, grown, or assembled in the U.S. By Investing in products that support American jobs, we are able to bring new exciting products to our customers, support new jobs in our local communities and invest in small business across the country,” said Laura Phillips, Walmart senior vice president for Global Sourcing & U.S. Manufacturing.
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“Walmart’s annual Open Call event gives us a unique occasion to identify new suppliers who can meet our customers’ needs with unique and innovative products manufactured or produced in the U.S. For the first time, this year’s Open Call event will be virtual, enabling even broader participation from potential new suppliers. We know how important this opportunity is for many small businesses, especially this year, and we are looking forward to seeing the new product submissions and meeting potential new suppliers,” added Phillips.
The company said this year’s Open Call attendees could secure deals ranging from a handful of stores in local markets to supplying hundreds, even thousands of stores, Sam’s Clubs, and on Walmart.com.
“We were walking into an entirely new and welcoming world,” said Gwen Hurt, owner of Shoe Crazy Wine, about her experience at Walmart’s 2018 Open Call where a Walmart buyer decided to test her product in 66 stores.
The entrepreneur added, “Everyone was so professional and kind throughout the process. We’ve been thrilled to work with Walmart and are excited about the continual growth of our product. Thanks to this relationship, we’ve been able to expand our operations to 15 employees while reinvesting in our community through the purchase of a once abandoned warehouse and additional resources. It’s a dream come true for our family.”
As of August 2020, Walmart is expanding Shoe Crazy Wine to 118 stores across Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia.
In January 2013, Walmart announced its commitment to help boost job creation and U.S. manufacturing by buying an additional $250 billion in products supporting American jobs by 2023. Walmart’s Open Call is one way in which the company continues to invest in this commitment, helping local entrepreneurs.