Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, sells as many as 142,000 different items in its largest Super-Center stores.
Walmart has what’s known as their “Open Call” day where the company puts out an invitation to any and all vendors, in this case those who sell “Made in the USA” products, to come to Bentonville one day in June. Some 1,200 vendors make the trip.
Each get about 30 minutes in tiny, bare bones rooms to make their pitch. If the Walmart buyer likes what they hear, they might make space for the new product in one, several or all of the company’s more than 4,000 stores.
Space on their shelves is fought for by thousands suppliers from around the world – including potential suppliers like Bo Jackson. But how do the folks at “the company Sam Walton built” decide what items make the cut?
Jackson, who starred as a running back for the Oakland Raiders and an outfielder for the Kansas City Royals in the 1980s and 1990s, was hailed as the “Greatest Athlete of All Time” by ESPN. But few know that Bo knows beef, pork and poultry, too.
In 2015 Jackson created V-E-J Holdings with the aim of selling high quality meat and fish at reasonable prices, a business model that would seem to fit nicely with Walmart’s stores.
Vincent Edward “Bo” Jackson is currently chief executive officer of VEJ Holdings, L.L.C. Through its burgeoning food division, Bo’s 34 Signature Foods, the company is partnering with several meat protein providers to exclusively market a variety of products.
Jackson pitched to Walmart in their brand new culinary center with several full kitchens.