‘The Workshop At Macy’s’ Set To Identify & Foster Growth In Minority And Women Owned Businesses

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    By: Special to the Daily World

    NEW YORK — In an effort to help bolster up-and-coming enterprises, Macy’s announces the creation of a one-of-a-kind program covering the business of fashion — The Workshop at Macy’s. Setting the stage for retail business innovation, The Workshop at Macy’s aims to nurture and grow the next generation of minority and women-owned retail talent.  The Workshop is the latest evolution of Macy’s longstanding commitment to vendor diversity and to providing customers with unique goods and services that meet their lifestyle.

    The specially designed business development curriculum of “The Workshop” is aimed at minority- and women-owned retail businesses that are poised to succeed on a larger scale, but need additional tools on business practices to move to the next level and sustain growth. The four-and-a-half-day intensive training course, to be held in May 2011 at Macy’s Herald Square offices in New York City, will be taught by Macy’s seasoned executives and industry experts, as well as key retail partners. With this annual program, Macy’s hopes to create a pipeline of viable vendors that will grow to become successful partners within Macy’s own vendor community.

    “Of the many initiatives Macy’s Inc. has pursued on behalf of our expanding diversity strategy, supplier diversity is an area of special importance,” said Terry J. Lundgren, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Macy’s Inc. “The Workshop at Macy’s is the latest example of our continued commitment to support and grow certified minority or women-owned retail vendors that will allow us to enhance our business, while also providing our customers with compelling product.”

    The Workshop at Macy’s will allow selected participants to collaborate with fellow aspiring vendors, gain access to industry experts and solicit one-on-one business coaching. “The Workshop at Macy’s will help us to identify and cultivate talent within the minority-  and women-owned small business community that will keep us at the forefront of innovation and continue to enhance our overall diversity strategy,” said Shawn Outler, Macy’s group vice president of multicultural merchandising and vendor development.

    Macy’s is now accepting entries for consideration. To be eligible, an applicant must be the majority (51 percent or more of equity) owner, co-owner or otherwise have operational control (per applicable status rules) of a business that has been in operation for a least two consecutive years and be its primary decision maker.

    Eligible applications will include a 250-word biographical statement; look book/line sheets or images of product including costs; resumes on all owners; and audited financial statements for the business for two years. Applicants must  fall within the minority- and women-owned definition of the program and provide verification of the business as a legal entity (i.e. corporation, LLC, etc.), among other requirements. Applications must be submitted by 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 11,  online or by mail.

    All information, including full program requirements, are available at http://www.macysinc.

    com/workshop.

    All eligible applications will be reviewed, and selected applicants will be asked to attend an in-person interview.

    Final selections will be made after all prospective candidates are interviewed. The program will aim to invite at minimum 20 candidates to attend the course which begins on May 9, 2011.

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