In January 2013 at the National Retail Federation’s annual convention Bill Simon, President, Walmart US, promised to bring back manufacturing to the United States. He promised that in 10 years $50 billion in goods would again be produced in the United States. It is a great project. It would create jobs and give a boost to the economy and also to national pride. It raises my hope that not everything will be produced overseas; that we have the ingenuity to produce products in mass in the United States.
I believe that Bill Simon and his staff have been working hard to achieve this goal. Some companies have already responded and they are listed below. As a matter of fact, I plan to monitor the success of this vital project from now on. The United States has been accused of having become a service community, and having lost its manufacturing skills to China and other less developed countries like Bangladesh, India and Brazil to mention just a few. With wage structures well below the United States, these countries have taken over the manufacturing of entire categories of merchandise.
I do not think the project is easy, since the competitive pressure from producers in the Far East will always be there. But, companies like General Electric, Kayser-Roth, Anchor Hocking and some others have already found a way to be part of the first wave of supporters by making a commitment to manufacture some products in the United States. Some of these suppliers’ goods will be exclusive to Walmart; others will be available in many retail stores.
Here are some specifics:
- General Electric will create 150 jobs to produce energy efficient soft white bulbs. This product will be exclusive to Walmart.
- Kayser-Roth will create more than 100 new jobs to produce No Nonsense legwear.
- Element Electronics will add 500 new jobs when they open their new facility in Winnsboro, SC to produce flat screen TV’s.
- Renfro will add 195 jobs to manufacture legswear and socks in Cleveland, TN, and Fort Payne, AL.
- Hampton Products will add 150 jobs to produce screen and storm door hardware in Shell Lake, WI.
- Élan-Polo in a joint venture with McPherson Manufacturing will add 250 new jobs once the new facility to produce injection-molded footwear in Hazelhurst, GA is complete.
- EveryWare Global will create two new manufacturing jobs in its expanded Monaca, PA facility producing bakeware, tabletop and household glassware and canning jars.
- Louis Hornick & Co. will create 150 new jobs manufacturing window covering and home textiles in a new facility in Allendale County, SC.
- Anchor Hocking will create 12 new jobs in producing kitchen utensils by the Tailor-Made Products division in Wisconsin.
- Redman & Associates will create 74 jobs manufacturing toys in Rogers, AR.
- Korona Candles will create 170 jobs to produce Mainstays Tealight candles in Virginia.
These companies alone will create 1,753 jobs the next few years as plants become operative and expansions are completed. This figure does not take into account the number of construction workers who will be helping in the building process and who would not have had the opportunity to work productively without this initiative.
The first participations seem to be in the South as well as the Mid-West. It will be interesting to watch who the next participants will be now that there is a blueprint in place on how to proceed. In the mid-1980’s I remember Sam Walton holding up a towel that was made in the United States. It was his first effort to bring manufacturing back to The United States. Now the company is much bigger, the commitment is much bigger, and the success will be felt nationwide.
I applaud Walmart for this important initiative. I think that many customers we will be proud to shop for domestically made products. I hope that more stores will join Walmart’s effort. It is good for the economy, it is good for employment and most important – it fosters pride in locally manufactured products.read more
Today, in observance of Veterans Day, Walmart announced significant progress in its support for veterans and military families. The company reported that it has hired more than 20,000 veterans since the launch of its Welcome Home Commitment on Memorial Day. It also kicked off its holiday giving with a $2 million donation to Operation Homefront and Fisher House to provide toys, meals and lodging to military families in greatest need of support this year. The donation will also help hundreds of active duty service members come home for the holidays.
The holiday donation is in addition to the commitment by the Walmart Foundation to give $20 million through 2015 to help veterans and their families prepare for successful civilian lives through job training, transition support and education.
“Today we’re reinforcing our pledge to hire, learn from and support our military heroes in every way we can, whether it’s recruiting veterans or reuniting military families during the holidays,” said Bill Simon, Walmart U.S. president and CEO and U.S. Navy veteran. “Through their service, our troops give us a land of freedom. We will keep doing our part to give them a land of possibility.”
20,000 Jobs for Veterans
Earlier this year Walmart pledged to offer a job to any honorably discharged veteran within his or her first 12 months off active duty. Since Walmart launched its Welcome Home Commitment on Memorial Day 2013, more than 20,000 veterans have been hired. “We are proud of the progress that has been made to this point, and we applaud other companies that have made their own hiring pledges, including most recently Starbucks, in what truly should be a national effort,” said Simon.
Walmart recruits veterans into positions that best match their skills and professional goals, from immediate jobs in stores and clubs to long-term careers. The company expects its commitment to result in the hiring of more than 100,000 veterans over the next five years.
U.S. Army Capt. Mike Bolton is one of the veterans hired by Walmart this year. He is a Logistics Load Manager at one of the company’s regional operations centers. “I wanted to be part of a company where I can go as far as my talent and hard work can take me,” said Bolton. “When I went to a local recruiting fair, I was excited to see Walmart reaching out to veterans. The skills I learned in the military translate well into my new job and I can see myself growing with the company.”
Walmart is one of the largest private employers of veterans in the country. Its workforce includes more than 100,000 veterans and another 150,000 associates who are part of veteran and military families.
Operation Homefront Receives $1.5 Million for “Home for the Holidays” Program
The holidays can be an especially challenging time for military families with a deployed spouse, parent or child. Operation Homefront will receive $1.5 million to provide 25,000 toys and more than 17,000 meals to military families nationwide. The gift also will support Operation Homefront’s “Home for the Holidays” program, which will bring home 500 active duty military to spend the holidays with their families.
“It is because of partners like Walmart that we are able to honor our commitment to provide year-round emergency financial assistance to the families of our military members and wounded warriors,” stated Jim Knotts, Operation Homefront president and CEO. “Not only are our military families dealing with the challenge of deployment and separation from loved ones, but they’re also confronted by difficult economic situations like many Americans. In fact, this year alone, we’ve seen requests for emergency financial assistance triple over historical levels. We are proud of our partnership with Walmart, and through our combined efforts we can make this time of year much more meaningful for thousands of military families.”
Largest Single Donation to Fisher House “Sponsor a Family” Program
In addition, Walmart will give $500,000 to the Fisher House “Sponsor a Family” program, the largest single donation to the program, which provides a home away from home for families with a service member in the hospital for an illness, disease or injury. The funding will provide 50,000 nights of free lodging for families so they can be close to loved ones.
“As an organization, we work very hard to fill the gaps and help our military during very difficult times, usually when a loved one is sick, or recovering from an injury. Our ability to make an impact is amplified through the support of partners, like Walmart, going above and beyond the call of duty,” stated Ken Fisher, Fisher House Foundation chairman and CEO. “The support from Walmart will enable us to cover the cost for half of our guests during the next year, a gift that is truly priceless to those we serve.”
Calling All Americans for a Nationwide Salute
To make sure everyone has the opportunity to join Walmart in saluting our nation’s military families, Operation Homefront and Fisher House are offering Americans online destinations for donating:
- Visit fisherhouse.org/Walmart to make a donation and salute Fisher House’s “Sponsor a Family” program.
- Visit operationhomefront.net/walmart to make a donation and salute military families this holiday season.
Consumers can also celebrate our nation’s heroes with Walmart’s Wall of Honor at walmart.com/wallofhonor, an online venue where anyone can recognize and share about the veterans in their lives, or join the conversation by following @WalmartVeterans on Twitter.
Walmart announced today that it is kicking off its holiday season with a special focus on more career opportunities for associates. The company expects to promote more than 160,000 associates to jobs with higher pay and more responsibility this year,including 25,000 promotions during its fourth quarter.
Top executives are traveling to stores today to congratulate promoted associates and thank them for the tremendous work they do serving the millions of customers who shop at Walmart. Promoted associates will receive higher pay and more responsibilities, as well as continued access to affordable health benefits.
“Our success from day one is a direct result of our associates and the hard work they do in taking care of our customers. We are proud to provide our people with additional opportunities for career growth and greater economic security for their families,” said Bill Simon, Walmart U.S. president and CEO. “Like most Americans, our associates want good jobs and access to a better life.
Whether you are a cashier in Charlotte, or a stocker in Dallas or an assistant manager in Los Angeles, Walmart wants to see you succeed.”
Walmart provides more employment opportunities than any other company in America. In addition to standard salary and benefits, both full- and part-time associates at Walmart are eligible for quarterly bonuses based on the performance of their stores. Associates also receive a discount card to save 10 percent on most regularly priced general merchandise, fresh fruits and vegetables at any Walmart store.
“I have been working in retail since I was in high school. I knew I wanted more opportunity to build my career, so when I heard Walmart was coming to town I immediately applied for a job,” said Yoselin Umana, a grocery department manager in North Bergen, NJ. “I have been with the company for four years now. I know I made the right choice for my career and my family.”
Walmart equals opportunity:
• At any given time there are between 15,000 and 50,000 job openings at Walmart U.S.
Once you’ve got the job, the promotional opportunities are unparalleled:
• There are, on average, more than 400 promotions a day at Walmart.
• Walmart U.S. promotes more than 160,000 associates every year.
• 40 percent of those promotions last year went to people in their first year with the company.
After that, the sky’s the limit:
• 75 percent of Walmart’s store management teams started as hourly associates.
• More than 30,000 assistant managers earn an average of more than $40,000 a year.
• More than 4,000 store managers earn an average of $170,000 a year.
Today’s promotions are in addition to Walmart’s announcement in September to move 35,000 associates from temporary to part time and another 35,000 associates from part time to full time by the end of the year.
Also this year, as part of an effort to give greater flexibility to employees, Walmart is providing associates with access to open shifts, giving them the opportunity to pick up extra hours that fit with their personal schedules. The company is also providing priority status for existing employees
to fill open positions, so current associates have the first opportunity to apply for open store positions, and access to supervisor roles at stores throughout the country.
“There is opportunity for everyone at Walmart. All you have to do is get your foot in the door,” said Claudine McKenzie, store manager in Lauderdale Lakes, Fla. “I started as a temporary associate 17 years ago and today I run my own store. I understand what this company has to offer people, and that’s why one of the best parts of my job is helping my associates develop and grow their careers.”
If anyone doubts the vitality of the rooftop solar market in the United States — and the hunger for clean energy that underlies it — one need look no further than “Solar Means Business 2013,” a new report out today from the Solar Energy Industries Association and Vote Solar.
The report, based on surveys of all Fortune 100 companies, supplemented with outreach to smaller companies and database research, shows that major corporations across the country increasingly see investments in solar as good for their bottom lines — a way to cut energy costs and redirect that money to their core business.
Company creating even more opportunity for over 125,000 associates
The holidays are a special time of year for many Americans. For some it’s about being with loved ones; for others it’s about giving their family a Christmas to remember.
“Our associates have always been the key to Walmart’s success, and that’s especially true during the holidays. We know our associates are going to deliver for our customers, so we are going to deliver for our associates. In addition to the traditional hiring of seasonal help, we are expanding opportunities for the people that already work for us.
“Walmart will hire 55,000 seasonal associates and we will transition more than 35,000 associates from temporary to part-time and another 35,000 associates from part-time to full-time.
“The Christmas season is a busy time for everyone and we know that millions of customers are counting on Walmart to help with great deals, low prices and one-stop shopping convenience. We are determined to help customers and associates provide their families a memorable and affordable Christmas.”- Gisel Ruiz, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, Walmart U.S.
$5 MILLION WALMART FOUNDATION GRANT HELPS GOODWILL GROW JOBS PROGRAM FOR VETERANS AND THEIR FAMILIES
ROCKVILLE, Md. — The Walmart Foundation has granted $5 million to Goodwill Industries International to expand Operation: GoodJobs, an initiative that equips military veterans and their families with the tools they need to earn employment and ensure long-term financial wellness for themselves and their families. Building upon effective practices developed via the Operation: GoodJobs pilot, Goodwill will scale the program to serve more than 4,000 veterans and military families over three years.
Operation: GoodJobs originally launched in the spring of 2012 at Goodwill agencies in Austin and Houston, Texas, and Tacoma, Wash., with a $1 million grant from the Walmart Foundation. After successfully serving more than 800 veterans and families, Goodwill and the Walmart Foundation will expand the program to include nine additional Goodwill headquarters in four states with high concentrations of veterans: California, New York, North Carolina and Texas.
“Operation: GoodJobs not only assists veterans and their families with job training and placement and skills attainment, but also plans for each participant’s continued success by designing individualized, comprehensive plans that support the needs of the entire family, including spouses and adult children, and helps ensure their economic stability in the long term,” said Jim Gibbons, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International. “Each participant in Operation: GoodJobs receives a complete career assessment and a development plan that includes a range of family needs, from basic needs such as child care, nutrition and shelter, to specific job training identified in the assessment process.”
The program connects veterans and their families with opportunities to earn certifications, market-value credentials and degrees that will help them with their careers. In addition, Operation: GoodJobs provides soft skills training, including résumé writing skills, career testing, and translating military skills to civilian language. Goodwill works with hundreds of business partners to find the right match for both participants and businesses. Through Operation: GoodJobs, Goodwill also offers employers free placement and screening services, and post-placement support.
“Veterans return home as proven leaders who have demonstrated their work ethic and commitment to achieving results as part of a team,” said retired U.S. Army Brigadier General Gary Profit, senior director of military programs at Walmart. “Knowing we will have more than one million veterans returning home in the next five years, Operation: GoodJobs will help us serve enlisted veterans under the age of 34 who need help transitioning back into the civilian workforce. Goodwill will provide the necessary career counseling and training so that these veterans can obtain employment, and, in turn, employers can benefit from their skills and talents and match them with meaningful employment opportunities.”
The three Operation GoodJobs pilot sites will continue to strengthen their programs and help lead the expansion of this work, as Goodwill Industries International competitively selects nine additional Goodwill subgrantees to implement the program during a three-year period. Preference will be given to Goodwill agencies that currently serve U.S. Guard and Reserve populations. Further preference will be given to agencies with existing veteran engagement and strong local partnerships directly linked to service members, veterans and their families. In particular, applicants will be chosen based on their ability to directly connect with service members as they exit active duty to provide them and their family members with financial strengthening services, including financial education and coaching, job training, and family and housing counseling.
The selected subgrantees will be announced in late October and will serve at least 15 percent of women veterans as part of Goodwill’s commitment to connect 3,000 women veterans to stable employment over the next two years. Research shows that women veterans are three times as likely as women non-veterans to become homeless, while male veterans are twice as likely as male non-veterans. Through Operation: GoodJobs, Goodwill will leverage understanding of this population to serve them and provide supports that lead to economic self-sufficiency.
If you know of a veteran who would benefit from these services or have questions, please call 800-GOODWILL or email email@example.com.
About Goodwill Industries International
Goodwill Industries International is a network of 165 community-based agencies in the United States and Canada with affiliates in 13 other countries. Goodwill is one of America’s top 25 most inspiring companies (Forbes). Goodwill agencies are innovative and sustainable social enterprises that fund job training programs, employment placement services and other community-based programs by selling donated clothing and household items in more than 2,700 stores and online at shopgoodwill.com®. Local Goodwill agencies also build revenue and create jobs by contracting with businesses and government to provide a wide range of commercial services, including packaging and assembly, food service preparation, and document imaging and shredding. In 2012, more than 6.7 million people in the United States and Canada benefited from Goodwill’s career services. Goodwill channels 82 percent of its revenues directly into its programs and services.
To find a Goodwill location near you, use the online locator at www.goodwill.org or call (800) GOODWILL. Follow us on Twitter: @GoodwillIntl and @GoodwillCapHill, and find us on Facebook: GoodwillIntl.
About Philanthropy at Walmart
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are committed to helping people live better through philanthropic efforts. By operating globally and giving back locally, Walmart is uniquely positioned to address the needs of the communities it serves and make a significant social impact within its core areas of giving: Hunger Relief & Healthy Eating, Sustainability, Career Opportunity and Women’s Economic Empowerment. Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are leading the fight against hunger in the United States with a $2 billion commitment through 2015. Walmart has donated more than one billion meals to those in need across the country. To learn more about Walmart’s giving, visit http://foundation.walmart.com.
ESCONDIDO — Shoppers began lining up outside the store early on Wednesday in the eastern part of the city.
For many of the shoppers, they were ready to stock up on goods and most were happy that they didn’t have to travel as far to do so anymore.
Walmart opened its doors for the first time to customers, signaling a new opportunity for employment for the more than 200 workers it hired, and the ability for the city to benefit from the sales tax the national, general warehouse store will bring to it.
And the generation of sales tax revenue started from day one, explained Mayor Sam Abed. “They will start generating a good amount of sales tax for our city,” he said.
The approximately 92,000 square foot store at 1330 E. Grand Ave. also signals further revitalization coming to the area.
“East County has been on the map for a revitalization,” said Rorie Johnston, senior director of operations with the Escondido Chamber of Commerce. “It’s certainly a corridor for us. And it’s always, of course, better to have businesses that are open, that the customers want, than a building that’s vacant.”
Johnston said the Chamber was always excited when businesses, whether they’re as big as Walmart or any of the smaller ones, like a taco shop, come into town because it creates vibrant neighborhoods.
Abed said he thought the Walmart would help bring the east part of town into the next level economically.
Would the city welcome another Walmart in the area?
“It’s been very challenging to find 10 to 15 acres to accommodate them and that’s why we have this store here,” said Abed.
“We would love to have (Walmart),” Abed added. “If there is a need here, they are a good retailer. And they serve a very diversified customer base, which reflects our diversity in Escondido.”
Abed referenced a second Walmart location opening in Escondido — this one a grocery store.
The Walmart grocery store, at 1266 E. Valley Parkway, is expected to open sometime next year, according to Walmart officials.
ESCONDIDO — Escondido’s first Walmart opened Wednesday to a crowd of enthusiastic shoppers and smiling city officials.
A few hundred people gathered for 7:15 a.m. grand-opening festivities, where city leaders read proclamations welcoming the retail giant to town and company officials announced donations to several local nonprofits.
As customers streamed inside, Walmart’s signature “greeters” handed them multi-colored cupcakes.
The store — on Grand Avenue and Harding Street in Escondido’s East Valley neighborhood — has encountered almost none of the criticism that Walmarts sometimes face over complaints of low wages or unfair competition.
City officials have said it will boost Escondido’s sales-tax revenue and provide an economic catalyst that will draw thousands of new customers to Escondido from Valley Center, Ramona and the backcountry.
The general-merchandise store employes more than 200 people. Walmart had hoped to build a 140,000-square-foot Supercenter in East Valley, but was stymied by a noncompete clause for grocery stores in the plaza.
Walmart has opened its first store in Escondido, located at 1330 E. Grand Ave. The new store employs approximately 215 full- and part-time workers, the company said.
More than 3,000 people applied to work at the store, and the majority of those hired are Escondido residents. The 92,000-square-foot store carries the retailer’s full lines of general merchandise and also has a pharmacy.
Arkansas-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc. also has upcoming new locations of its small-format grocery store, known as Neighborhood Market, planned in Escondido and Oceanside. The Escondido debut is expected by year’s end, with the Oceanside opening planned for the first half of 2014.
• New store located at 1330 E. Grand Ave.
• Store provides about 215 new jobs
• Store open from 6 a.m. to midnight daily
A new Walmart store will open Wednesday, Sept. 11, ribbon-cutting ceremony at 7:15 a.m. The new store at 1330 E. Grand Ave. will be open from 6 a.m. to midnight, daily. It will provide Escondido residents with a new shopping option for their general merchandise needs, as well as a full-service pharmacy.
The store opening ceremony will include a moment of silence, patriotic song medley and an address from a Walmart associate who is also a U.S. military veteran. The ceremony will continue with remarks from local dignitaries and Walmart executives, concluding with a ribbon cutting and the official store opening.
The store features quality general merchandise, including apparel, electronics, toys, sporting goods, health and beauty aids, hardware, housewares, pet supplies, and lawn and garden items, all at Walmart’s Every Day Low Prices.
“I am so pleased to see Walmart bring a store to Escondido,” said Escondido Mayor Sam Abed. “Our residents will benefit from the savings on their shopping bills, as well as from Walmart’s investment in the community through charitable giving and tax revenues, which will help us provide better services in our City.”
The pharmacy offers a full range of products and services. Pharmacy team members can answer product and prescription questions and customers can ask about health and wellness solutions. Customers will have access to Walmart’s prescription program, which provides hundreds of generic drugs and over-the-counter medications at a cost of $4 for a 30-day supply or $10 for a 90-day supply.
New Store, New Jobs
The new store employs approximately 215 full- and part-time associates. More than 3,000 people applied for a job at the new store, and the majority of associates live in Escondido. Store manager Sivo Aisabonghi began his Walmart career in 2009 as a manager in Fontana and most recently worked in Pomona.
“We’d like to invite everyone to see their beautiful new store,” said Aisabonghi. “We are excited to be a part of the Escondido community, and we look forward to giving residents a great shopping experience along with Every Day Low Prices.”
“We are so excited to have Walmart as part of our community,” said Les Abshire, Chief Executive Officer of the Escondido Chamber of Commerce. “The jobs it has created and the foot traffic it will bring to Chamber member businesses and other area businesses are good news for the Escondido economy.”
Walmart supports local charitable causes that are important to the communities it serves. In the past two years, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have donated more than $4.5 million to charitable and civic organizations that serve residents of Escondido and San Diego County, including recent donations to North County Community Services and Escondido Charitable Foundation.
The grand opening ceremony will also include presentations of approximately $20,000 in grants from Walmart and the Walmart Foundation to local groups that serve veterans and first responders and the Escondido community, including Escondido Firefighter’s Association, Operation Homefront, Escondido Creek Conservancy and Escondido Youth Soccer.
Walmart knows that being an efficient and profitable business and being a good steward of the environment are goals that can work together. The sustainability goals that guide Walmart’s efforts include being supplied 100 percent by renewable energy and creating zero waste. These goals are incorporated into the design and operation of each Walmart store.
The new store will include energy-efficient technology and environmentally friendly features to reduce energy and water consumption and minimize waste. All internally illuminated exterior building signage will use light emitting diodes (LEDs). Highly efficient and low-flow toilets and faucets will reduce the water used in the restrooms. The store will also operate recycling programs and promote sustainable product purchases.
A Big Family Welcome
Walmart is happy to be part of the Escondido community and is ready to celebrate with residents Saturday, Sept. 14. A Big Family Welcome will give customers a chance to meet Aisabonghi and enjoy fun family activities such as face painting, cupcake decorating and free food samples while supplies last. Join the celebration from noon to 4 p.m.
Join the Conversation
Walmart invites Escondido shoppers to share their in-store experience on Facebook and Twitter by using #MyNewWalmart. Visit the My Local Walmart Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/walmart5996. Fans of the local page can receive information about rollbacks, in-store events, meal solutions and more.
• Location: 1330 E. Grand Ave., Escondido, CA
• Size: Approximately 92,000 square feet
• Store manager: Sivo Aisabonghi
• Hours: 6 a.m. to midnight, daily
• Grand opening: Wednesday, Sept. 11, at 8 a.m., 7:15 a.m. ribbon-cutting ceremony
• General merchandise categories include:
o Family apparel
o Health and beauty aids
o Lawn and garden items
o Automotive products
o Home furnishings
o Sporting goods
o Pet supplies
o Household goods
• Convenience services include:
o Pharmacy drive-thru
o Digital-photo processing center
o Walmart Site-to-Store
• Approximately $20,000 in grants from Walmart and the Walmart Foundation will be presented to area organizations that support veterans and first responders and the Escondido community, including:
o Operation Homefront
o Escondido Firefighter’s Association
o Escondido Police Officer’s Association
o Escondido Creek Conservancy
o Escondido Youth Soccer
o Escondido High School
o Interfaith Community Services
• Number of jobs created: Approximately 215
• Number of applications: More than 3,000
• Full- and part-time positions
• Saturday, Sept. 14, from noon to 4 p.m.