Walmart Hosts Open Call

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BENTONVILLE (KFSM) -- More than 500 entrepreneurs from across the nation pitched their products at Walmart’s open call on Wednesday (June 28). This marks the fourth-year companies have come to Bentonville in hopes of getting their products in Walmart stores.

Charcoal Box USA is a product manufactured in Northeast Arkansas.

Sales manager Paul Decoursey said three years ago the owner created the product after forgetting his chimney starter while on a camping trip.

“He ended up an old Kentucky Fried Chicken basket to get his charcoal started then started playing around with it from there and what we've done is that we've took that concept and put it into charcoal in a box,” he said.

Decoursey said in the recyclable box there are three pounds of natural charcoal. Twenty minutes after a few quick steps, he said you'll be able to cook out wherever you are.

Walmart buyer Dawn Henry said the entrepreneurs are paired up with a buyer from the category their product falls into. After they make their pitch, the buyers give them feedback, possibly saying their product is great and they want to buy it.

“Usually it's somewhere in the middle...we'll want to do business, but there might be some things we need to work toward together but overall it will be an exciting day of yeses,” Henry said.

Decoursey said this was their second time to pitch this product to a Walmart buyer and Wednesday(June 28) they were excited with the progress they've made.

“If you walk up to this you have two seconds with a consumer, they're going to make a decision. Well what's this for. So, we created a whole point of sale piece for him that tells the customer how to use it...a, b, c and what it's for,” he said.

There were people from 47 states at the pitch event.