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05/03/2022

Consultancy Launches Diverse Supplier Development Program

Panel of retail industry experts will assess MPG's applicants
Bridget Goldschmidt
Managing Editor
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Companies across the food and beverage, consumables, general merchandise, beauty, personal care, OTC, and health-and-wellness categories can apply to take part in MPG’s Diverse Supplier Development Program.

Market Performance Group LLC (MPG), a CPG/retail consultancy and managed sales services firm serving manufacturers, is launching its first-ever Diverse Supplier Development Program, a newly created accelerator program that will provide pro bono support for diverse suppliers and entrepreneurs as they prepare to sell their products in digital and traditional retail channels.

The event comes in the wake of a successful virtual presentation hosted by Jason Reiser, president of sales strategy and services at Princeton, N.J.-based MPG. “Winning at the Speed of Retail” took place on April 6 during ECRM’s Supplier Diversity Week. The presentation focused on the importance of a diverse and inclusive supplier network and laid out five fundamentals for winning at retail. 

“Shifting demographics have prompted widespread retailer engagements, commitments and accountabilities to create a more diverse supplier base for their shoppers,” said Reiser.  “This program allows us to extend our own DEI&B efforts to our client base to do good by doing well. We look forward to leveraging our robust industry experience and expertise to facilitate a more successful outcome for the selected diverse suppliers.”

In collaboration with Solon, Ohio-based ECRM, MPG’s Diverse Supplier Development Program’s virtual “Shark Tank”-like event, scheduled for July 14, will give two diverse suppliers MPG services valued at $100,000.  The services will be tailored to each recipient’s need, determined collaboratively through the MPG onboarding process. Potential services for suppliers could include strategy and business consulting, sales services representation at retail, business analytics and insights, consumer marketing and retail activation, or 3PL and order-to-cash services.

The applicants will be judged by a panel of retail industry experts, including Michael A. Byron, senior director of supplier inclusion at Walmart Inc.; Kate Weaver, manager of supplier diversity at Peapod Digital Labs, a company of Ahold Delhaize USA; Christina Fallon, VP of retail sales - health and beauty at ECRM; Anthony Eagelton, VP of e-commerce at Market Performance Group; and Carla Hendon, director, supplier diversity and indirect procurement at Meijer, which has held several supplier diversity events with ECRM. Walmart division Sam’s Club also recently partnered with ECRM on an open call for both private-brand and diverse suppliers.

Companies across the food and beverage, consumables, general merchandise, beauty, personal care, OTC, and health-and-wellness categories can apply to take part in MPG’s Diverse Supplier Development Program through May 19 via San Francisco-based RangeMe, an ECRM company.

The two winners will be revealed on July 21, and the partnership with MPG will start in fall 2022. A submission link will be sent to ECRM Diversity Program participants on May 3. 

Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart operates approximately 10,500 stores under 46 banners in 24 countries, and e-commerce websites, employing 2.2 million-plus associates worldwide. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. Ahold Delhaize USA, a division of Zaandam, Netherlands-based Ahold Delhaize, with more than 2,000 stores across 23 states, and Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Meijer, with more than 260 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin, are Nos. 10 and 18, respectively, on The PG 100.

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