Walmart Opens Call for Products
Walmart is accepting applications for its sixth annual Open Call, scheduled for June 18 and 19 at the company’s Home Office campus in Bentonville, Arkansas.
Apply today by visiting Walmart-jump.com for the opportunity to secure a face-to-face pitch meeting with a Walmart buyer. The application deadline is April 30.
Honolulu-based Samurai Inc. has been a Walmart supplier for over five years with its Hawaiian Frost frozen dairy treats in flavors such as lychee, mango, chocolate coconut swirl and more. In early 2018, as the company expanded their pre-packaged popcorn line of products to all 10 Hawai‘i Walmart locations, it invested in additional popcorn packaging equipment to make the supply chain more efficient. The line features favorite local flavors such as furikake, moana sweet and salty, and more.
“Working with Walmart’s local Hawai‘i buying team has been a great experience,” said Roz Funakoshi, vice president for Samurai Inc. “Walmart recognizes the importance of our local business culture and local trends and are working with us right here on O‘ahu.”
She continued, “Being a Walmart vendor has benefitted our company in more ways than just the spike in sales. Since Walmart is an internationally known retailer of quality products at great prices, consumers have confidence in products found on Walmart’s shelves and are more inclined to purchase a product they may not be familiar with. This in itself is a benefit of being a Walmart vendor.”
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 Walmart.com. The two-day event informs, empowers and encourages attendees while providing effective networking opportunities for local entrepreneurs.
“Our customers tell us that products made, sourced or grown in the U.S. are important to them and we work year-round to identify local suppliers and source products that our customers are proud to buy,” said Cindi Marsiglio, Walmart’s vice president of Merchandise Services and U.S. Manufacturing. “Walmart’s Annual Open Call gives us a unique opportunity to meet entrepreneurs from across the country and discover new, niche and innovative products that fill a need for our customers and support jobs right here in America.”
During the 2018 Walmart Open Call, nearly 600 meetings were held with product pitches including toys, apparel, natural health and beauty aids, and food. Prospective suppliers traveled from 46 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. More than half of the attending businesses self-identified as diverse, including nearly 25 percent identifying as women-owned.
In January 2013, Walmart announced its commitment to help boost job creation and U.S. manufacturing through 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. Last year, Walmart spent $238 million with Hawaii suppliers, supporting over 23,000 local jobs.
Apply for Open Call today and join the conversation on your social channels by using #WalmartOpenCall.