Open Call 2021 is now in the books with more than 900 small businesses from across the country pitching their products made, grown or assembled in the U.S. to Walmart and Sam’s Club merchants on June 30th. This year’s group marked the largest ever to take part in the one-day event, representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
Of those businesses, more than 160 are advancing to the next stage in the process to land a deal with Walmart or Sam’s Club, and another 700+ are receiving further consideration. More than 17 small businesses from California are among those advancing to the next round, with hopes of landing their products on Walmart and Sam’s Club shelves.
“Open Call supports Walmart’s overall commitment to U.S Manufacturing and small businesses. In March, Walmart announced an additional spend of $350 billion on items made, grown or assembled in the U.S. over the next ten years,” said Laura Phillips, senior vice president, customer and business development and U.S. manufacturing for global sourcing at Walmart. “We also announced our American Lighthouses concept, which strives to accelerate progress on this commitment.”
Walmart’s Lighthouses are a plan to unite key stakeholders in specific regions of the country to identify and overcome top-down barriers to U.S. production. They will focus on these categories: textiles; metals and motors; food processing; plastics; pharmaceutical and medical supplies.
Businesses who advanced during Open Call will continue working with merchants on opportunities to sell their products in Walmart stores and Sam’s Clubs. All businesses who took part in Open Call are eligible to sell their shelf-stable products on Walmart’s various online platforms Walmart.com, Walmart Marketplace or Samsclub.com.
Open Call supports Walmart’s overall $350 billion commitment to U.S. Manufacturing. In addition to an increase in spending and support for small businesses and diverse suppliers, the company estimates the commitment will support the creation of more than 750,000 new American jobs and will help avoid 100 million metric tons of CO2 emissions by sourcing closer to customers.