ThomasNet to Help Walmart Suppliers Find U.S. Manufacturers
By Susan Avery
ThomasNet is helping Walmart suppliers locate manufacturers in the U.S.
Walmart suppliers are participating in the retailer’s Made in USA initiative to add $250 billion in American-made products in 10 years to its stores. It aims to do this by buying more from exising U.S. suppliers, finding new products in the U.S. and reshoring products back to the U.S.
A challenge for Walmart suppliers is sourcing component parts and raw materials from manufacturers with plants in the U.S., Tom Greco, Vice President of ThomasNet
tells My Purchasing Center. With immediate access to more than 500,000 U.S. manufacturers of products, components and custom services, ThomasNet should be able to help the suppliers.
“At their request, we launched a new corporate edition of ThomasNet.com
which brings into the fold a number of organizational-level features, including approved supplier capabilities,” Greco says. Walmart suppliers “will have full visibility into the products and capabilities their existing supply base can provide.”
Greco and ThomasNet Director of Audience Development, Donna Cicale debuted the new ThomasNet.com Corporate Edition for Walmart at Walmart's U.S. Manufacturing Summit
in July in Bentonville, Ark. More than 2,000 existing and prospective Walmart suppliers attended the event.
Other features of the corporate edition available now exclusively to suppliers to Walmart include capability to invite an unlimited number of manufacturers to reply to a single request for information, quote or proposal; ThomasNet follow up with manufacturers to determine disposition of an RFI and help expedite a response and collaboration tools.
In a short video clip of a presentation to suppliers posted on the ThomasNet blog
, Cindi Marsiglio, Vice President of U.S. Sourcing and Domestic Manufacturing for Walmart, described the new partnership with ThomasNet. She said, “Think of it as a concierge level service for you. It’s a great way that we can connect you with an opportunity to find more raw materials and component parts in the U.S., one of the major challenges you’ve been sharing with us since the beginning.”
Marsiglio outlined these challenges in an interview with My Purchasing Center at NPE2015 earlier this year
. Then, she discussed Walmart’s response to supplier difficulty navigating through programs states offer to train workers and help site new plants as well as the retailer's establishment of a $10 million innovation fund to support research into specific areas, such as motors and tooling.
To access the corporate edition, Walmart suppliers are encouraged to register at the company’s Jump portal
(Jobs in US Manufacturing). From there, they will be able to sign up for a special onboarding program which will include webinars, tips and information on getting the most out of the corporate edition.
ThomasNet is a proud supporter of U.S. manufacturing for more than 100 years, and, Greco says, “was honoroed when Walmart asked us to join its domestic manufacturing initiative.”
Based on data from Boston Consulting Group, it is estimated that one million new U.S. jobs will be created through the Walmart Made in USA initiative.
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