Small business owners and entrepreneurs with a dream of selling their U.S.-made, grown or assembled products to millions of customers now have their chance. Walmart announced the opening of the application period for its 9th annual Open Call event.
Open Call is Walmart’s largest sourcing event that aims to bring products made, grown, or assembled in the U.S. to shoppers across the country, both in-store and online, said the retailer in a press release. Open Call helps support Walmart’s 10-year commitment to American jobs through its $350 billion investment in items made, grown, or assembled in the U.S.
For the first time in the program’s nine-year history, Walmart offered an exclusive early access period for Marketplace sellers to apply for Open Call, resulting in more than 2,000 companies registering more than 6,000 items they hope to present to merchants. If selected, participants will be able to choose from virtual or in-person pitch meetings with a Walmart or Sam’s Club merchant during the June 28-29 event.
This year, Walmart is offering mentoring sessions to all applicants registering for the event to provide tools to become successful selling on Walmart’s virtual and physical shelves. In addition to sourcing new products, Open Call also aims to expand the retailer’s work with current online sellers.
According to Walmart, applications for the two-day hybrid event will be accepted through April 8.
“We know how much supporting American products and American jobs truly does matter to our suppliers, entrepreneurs, sellers, and local communities,” says Laura Phillips, Walmart senior vice president for Global Sourcing & U.S. Manufacturing. “With all the new tools and resources available this year, we’re hoping we can foster growth for many more businesses and Walmart Marketplace sellers that already work with us, along with those that are just getting started.”
Applicants who receive a one-on-one product pitch meeting invitation will be given 30 minutes to showcase to Walmart and/or Sam’s Club merchants why their product and business should join the Walmart family.
Entrepreneurs can secure deals ranging from supplying products to a handful of local stores to supplying hundreds of Walmart stores and Sam’s Clubs as well as Walmart.com.
In addition to the product pitch meetings, Open Call includes breakout sessions featuring Walmart and Sam’s Club leaders and special guests to provide suppliers and sellers with valuable insights and offer additional resources.
In its ninth year, Walmart’s annual Open Call event continues to grow in popularity with small businesses across the country. Last year’s event saw more than 900 small and medium-sized businesses from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico pitch their products to Walmart and Sam’s Club merchants.
Businesses wishing to apply for this year’s Open Call event can apply here.