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Empowering women with expanded assortments

A Walmart initiative begun a year ago to offer an online assortment of products from small women-owned businesses has expanded to the retailer’s stores.

The initiative is part of Walmart’s “Empowering Women Together,” platform and is timed to coordinate with Mother’s Day. Walmart, in collaboration with Full Circle Exchange, an innovative social enterprise brand, identified five suppliers to bring new products into Walmart stores this spring including, Caribbean Craft, Fidenzo Designs, Nirmal, Soreh Designs and women refugees employed at Full Circle’s facility in Boise, Idaho. For the first time, as a part of Walmart’s Empowering Women Together initiative, the small women-owned businesses from the U.S., Peru, Haiti and India are being introduced to a nationwide audience of shoppers. Among the nearly 50 products available now available at 2,600 Walmart stores are scarves, aprons, mugs, chocolate gift sets and greeting cards.

“Empowering Women Together began as an online platform one year ago, and this spring we are bringing select products in-store. By offering these products in-store, several small women-owned businesses will now have access to more than an estimated 100 million shoppers,” said MiKaela Wardlaw Lemmon, senior director of Women’s Economic Empowerment at Walmart. “We are excited to offer this opportunity to both our customers and suppliers. Mother’s Day is a time to celebrate the special women in our lives. This Mother’s Day assortment allows our customers to give gifts that will not only wow mom, but uplift women around the world.”

Empowering Women Together launched in March 2013 as an online platform with 19 suppliers representing nine countries and more than 200 items. Since launch, Empowering Women Together has grown to more than 30 suppliers in 11 different countries with more than 350 products

The Empowering Women Together program is part of Walmart’s larger commitment to increase sourcing from women-owned businesses. Other goals include sourcing $20 billion from women-owned businesses for its U.S. business and double sourcing from women suppliers for the international markets where it does business.