WASHINGTON — Strong partnerships, due diligence and clear business goals are crucial for minority-owned businesses to strengthen their ties with national retailers, Macy’s and Wal-Mart executives said Thursday.
“Be passionate, bring your passion to the table….Communicate that,” Adrienne White, senior manager, African-American market for Wal-Mart Stores Inc., said during a conference here hosted by the Commerce Department’s Minority Business Development Agency.
Aubyn Thomas, senior vice president of marketing services, corporate services for Macy’s Inc., spoke about the retailer’s efforts to reach out to small minority- and women-owned companies through its supplier diversity program. Many small companies don’t know the scope and scale of what is required to do business with a national retailer like Macy’s, Thomas said, stressing it is essential a potential supplier do its homework.
Wal-Mart’s size is also challenging. The world’s largest retailer has been incorporating more minority- and women-owned businesses into its supply chain since 1994, White said. Potential partners must articulate how they fit into the company’s business model.
The executives said their respective firms are committed to diversifying the supplier base, and acknowledged there is still much work to be done.
“Minority businesses are key to helping us understand the minority customer and to provide the items she wants to buy,” Thomas said, citing the success of brands such as Carol’s Daughter beauty.
“A community will tell you what they want in a business that will help make that business successful,” NBA Hall of Fame player-turned-entrepreneur Magic Johnson said during his keynote address at the conference. Johnson owns movie theaters, Starbucks franchises, a private real estate fund and other businesses located in ethnically diverse urban areas.
The conference concludes tonight when a lifetime achievement award will be presented to fashion and music impresario Russell Simmons.
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
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25-year-old @samweaving is about to break out this fall, starring in Netflix’s horror film “The Babysitter,” fittingly out today on Friday the 13th. That’s not the only place you’ll be seeing her, though — Weaving’s got a role Showtime’s “SMILF” and another alongside Frances McDormand and Woody Harrelson in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Though she’s got a full plate at the moment, there’s one role she’s got her eye on: Marilyn Monroe. “I’m a little too young at the moment, but it’s on my bucket list,” the actress told WWD (📷: @dandoperalski) #wwdeye
BFF's Poppy Jamie and Suki Waterhouse celebrated the launch of their bag line Pop x Suki at Nordstrom last night. "The line is really about our friendship, and how we are so different but complement each other," said Waterhouse. 👯 (📷: Katie Jones) #wwdeye
After designing the new @louisvuitton and @bulgariofficial flagships and a @chanelofficial boutique opening in Japan, @petermarinoarchitect has another project on his plate: The Lobster Club. Located in the Seagram Building, it’s the famed architect’s first restaurant project in New York, serving up modern Japanese brasserie-style cuisine. Bronze hues, bespoke material detailing, blush and chartreuse tones and a heavy emphasis on Picasso can be seen throughout. Mark your calendars for Nov. 1 for the much-anticipated opening. (📷: @clint_spaulding) #wwdeye