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Walmart looks to help others with women's empowerment


Walmart has launched a digital platform to share tips and learnings that grew out of its five-year Women's Economic Empowerment Initiative.

As part of the ambitious initiative, which Walmart completed in January, the chain sourced $20 billion from Women Owned Businesses (WOBs) for its U.S. business, increased sourcing from WOBs internationally, and trained more than 1 million women worldwide.

"Through this initiative, we have increased sourcing from women-owned businesses, empowered women in retail supply chains through training in agriculture and factories, and promoted diversity and inclusion within supplier account teams supporting Walmart," Kathleen McLaughlin, chief sustainability officer, Walmart, and president, Walmart Foundation, stated in a blog post on the company's site. "Over the years, we’ve learned a lot about what works, what doesn’t, and what’s needed to accelerate progress.

"Our goal was to help women enhance their incomes as well as build their confidence as leaders in their workplaces.''

The new platform, called the Global Women's Economic Empowerment Knowledge Center is an open source digital platform that houses practical tips and stories related to sourcing from women entrepreneurs and empowering women in emerging markets. The best practices are based on Walmart’s work. There are links to other relevant content.

The site can be used by any company to better inform their work to empower women, Walmart said. It is currently focused on sourcing, but will continue to evolve and Walmart will add material on its training initiative in the coming months.

In related news, Walmart announced it is one of nine Fortune 500 companies joining in a collaborative effort to track and report sourcing from self-identified and certified WOBs during the next five years.
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