In a new partnership with the Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), Walmart plans to sell merchandise featuring a unique logo identifying the goods as produced by women-owned businesses.
The move is part of Walmart's Global Women's Economic Empowerment initiative, launched in September 2011. At the time, Walmart committed to source $20 billion from women for its U.S. business and to double sourcing from women internationally by the end of 2016.
In a statement from WBENC and Walmart, MiKaela Wardlaw Lemmon, senior director of Women's Economic Empowerment at Walmart, said the retailer hopes the new logo will "make customers around the world more aware of great products from women-owned businesses, and help these women continue to grow their businesses."
Walmart pointed to a recent survey it conducted that showed that 90 percent of female customers in the U.S. would go out of their way to purchase products from women, believing they would offer higher quality.
The statement further noted that women-owned businesses contribute over $1.3 trillion dollars to the U.S. economy and women are responsible for over 80 percent of the consumer decisions globally. Creating awareness of these products can result in sales growth, increased consumer knowledge and loyalty, the statement said.
Women-owned businesses that are WBENC and/or WEConnect International certified will be eligible to display the logo on their product packaging. According to Bloomberg Businessweek, lingerie brand Smart & Sexy and Maggie's Salsa are among the women-owned businesses that plan to adopt the logo.
The Consumerist questioned whether a "women's-owned" label would support sales similar to the way "organically certified" or "locally sourced" labels do.
How appealing do you think a "women owned" label will be to consumers?