Walmart wants to shine a spotlight on innovative products produced by Indiana entrepreneurs.
The retail giant has launched its eighth annual Open Call, which encourages entrepreneurs who want to sell their products on Walmart shelves and online to apply for an opportunity to meet with Walmart buyers on June 30 via virtual pitch meetings.
The deadline to apply for this year’s Open Call for products made, grown, or assembled in the U.S. is April 30.
“Open Call is like watching the American Dream play out in real time,” said Laura Phillips, Walmart senior vice president for global sourcing and U.S. manufacturing. “You see on full display the spirit and energy of new ideas and the hope of what could be – founded on creativity, hard work, and self-belief. It’s inspiring.”
On March 3, Walmart announced a commitment to spend $350 billion on items made, grown, or assembled in the U.S. It is estimated this investment will support more than 750,000 new American jobs.
Walmart’s Open Call is one way the company supports its commitment.
The June 30 virtual event will include one-on-one pitch meetings with Walmart merchants. Participants will have opportunities to hear directly from Walmart executives at the hour-long kickoff of the event.
Smaller breakout sessions will be available throughout the day where suppliers can learn more on valuable topics and about resources available to them.
This year’s Open Call attendees could secure opportunities that range from promoting products in a handful of stores in local markets to supplying products to hundreds, even thousands, of Walmart stores, Sam’s Clubs and online.
Walmart operates 125 locations in Indiana and employs 41,388 people across the state. Walmart spent $1.5 billion with Hoosier suppliers in its 2019 fiscal year, which supported 47,049 Indiana supplier jobs, the retailer said.