Walmart to encourage woman entrepreneur in India
Walmart recently felicitated as many as 32 women entrepreneurs in its pilot Walmart Women Entrepreneurship Development Programme in India, in an attempt to strengthen its focus on increasing diversity in the supply chain. Of them, the retailer has identified 8 entrepreneurs as suppliers, since their products fitted the assortment. Going forward, Walmart India plans to launch a similar program to train women entrepreneurs in professional and soft skills to help them build businesses. In September 2011, Walmart launched its Global Women’s Economic Empowerment initiative and through it, by the end of 2016, it could source $20 billion from women for its US business. In India, where it has about 21 cash-and-carry stores and currently has a pipeline of about 50 women suppliers on board.
The idea is that when women become entrepreneurs, their social status in the country goes up. Walmart currently has around 50 women suppliers in its ecosystem. The aim is to doubling the sourcing from women suppliers from the Indian market. For Walmart supporting women-owned businesses is a strategic initiative and makes good business sense since customers see products from women-owned businesses as being of better quality. The company has been able to increase women participation at the store level to 16% across all its stores in India. The target is to have 25% women store managers over the next 5 years.