Company Helps Suppliers Appeal to Walmart

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There are hundreds of thousands of products on the shelves of Walmart stores. But getting there isn't easy. One local group is helping suppliers and companies perfect their products and learn what it takes to make the cut.

You can tell by the name of the Bentonville company, 8th and Walton, that its business is directly tied to Walmart. The company’s team helps teach suppliers how to conduct business with the retailer.

Company partner Jeff Clapper says 8th and Walton is adding another program, "Selling to the Masses." It helps suppliers get their products on store shelves. Clapper says it’s a tough road.

"Thirty-thousand new consumer products launch each year, and ninety-five percent of them fail,” Clapper says. “There has to be a way to make it better. And a lot of that will come from educating people. And some of that education will deter people and help them realize maybe this isn’t a great idea."

Classes are held at the company’s Bentonville office, or at one of 10 other sites in Benton County, and even online.

"Someone who is all about package design or prototyping or sourcing or analysis distribution or logistics, all of those experts along the way,” says Clapper. “This program is designed to help people so they are not learning on their own.”

Sushi Quick is one of the products 8th and Walton is working with. The company selects products with the most potential, presents to a consumer product innovation lab and then invests in the top picks.

"We've heard from almost four hundred companies,” Clapper says. “We are now reviewing, and we've narrowed it down to about six companies that we’re about to review with our advisory board. I think in the next few weeks we'll make an announcement as to which companies we will be actively taking a role in."

The team at 8th and Walton says whether you've got your product out on a small scale already, or if you're starting from scratch, they can help.

Some of the company’s webinars and video content is free. Higher levels classes can cost between $500 to $1000.