BENTONVILLE, Ark.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--On June 13, Walmart’s Home Office will be buzzing with entrepreneurs from 46 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia ready to pitch their U.S.-made products. For its fifth annual Open Call, Walmart invited more than 450 businesses to meet one-on-one with buyers for a chance to get their products on store shelves and in the hands of millions of customers.
In 2013, Walmart made a commitment to purchase an additional $250 billion by 2023 in products made, sourced or grown in the U.S. Open Call underscores this commitment and is one way in which the company continues to invest in American jobs by supporting U.S. manufacturing. This year’s attendees include companies manufacturing a wide variety of products and features diverse entrepreneurs – more than half of all businesses attending Open Call self-identify as diverse, including nearly 25 percent identifying as women-owned.
“We are so excited about this year’s event and the opportunity to meet the entrepreneurs that look to Open Call as a chance to get the big break they have been looking for,” said Cindi Marsiglio, Walmart vice president for Merchandising Services and U.S. Manufacturing. “We are proud of the supplier success stories from prior years and look forward to helping more entrepreneurs realize the American dream.”
With some companies pitching multiple products, more than 750 meetings have been scheduled with Walmart buyers. From toys and apparel to health and beauty aids and food, this year’s variety of new, innovative products represents a broad range of categories. Attendees will include entrepreneurs who want to get their products in Walmart stores for the first time, as well as existing suppliers trying to expand their assortment into other areas of the store.
Of the 46 states represented this year, the states with the most companies include California (57), Florida (44), Michigan (40), New York (30), New Jersey (27), Texas (25) and Illinois (25).
Some of this year’s Open Call attendees include:
- Eric and Mary Claire VanderSchaaf of Austin, TX who have a sweet product, literally. Tree Hive Syrup hopes to secure a spot on the breakfast aisle in Walmart stores across the country.
- The Drop Stoppers, based in St. Peters, MO, keeps busy parents from picking up toys and sippy cups up off the floor.
- Pop Culture Gourmet Popcorn, LLC from Norfolk, VA is quickly capturing the attention and taste buds of everyone who samples the product.
- Zip n’ Store brings convenience to storage. Based in Pittsburgh, PA, Len Kensey is excited to meet with buyers during Open Call to demonstrate the value of the product.
- Phoenix, AZ-based Goodfibers, LLC knows a successful pitch for their All Clear Baby Wipes next week could mean the deal of a lifetime with the world’s largest retailer.
- Oxnard, CA-based Primal Essence is focused on helping all people eat and drink for their health, and a space on Walmart shelves would be a huge help in reaching their goal.
- Detroit, MI is home to Crystal Eikcaj Skin and Hair Care, LLC who specialize in organic products that can help provide relief from a variety of ailments.
- Jay Colicchia is betting on Kiwi Kiss, an authentic fruit treat headquartered and manufactured in Boca Raton, FL, as another healthier treat Walmart customers will love.
Walmart customers and fans of supplier-hopefuls can wish local businesses luck on their journey to Open Call by joining conversations on social channels using #MadeinUSA and #WalmartOpenCall.
Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better - anytime and anywhere - in retail stores, online, and through their mobile devices. Each week, nearly 270 million customers and members visit our more than 11,700 stores under 65 banners in 28 countries and eCommerce websites. With fiscal year 2018 revenue of $500.3 billion, Walmart employs approximately 2.3 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://corporate.walmart.com, on Facebook at http://facebook.com/walmart and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/walmart.