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Walmart to launch global e-commerce empowerment solution for women

New York City -- Walmart plans to launch a dedicated page on Walmart.com that will feature an assortment of products created by women in nearly two dozen countries, including women who work in cooperatives and own small businesses. Scheduled to be available in spring 2012, products will include jewelry from Guatemala, Thailand and Ethiopia; coffee from Central and South America; and dresses from Kenya.

The news builds on the goals that the chain announced last week around global women's economic empowerment. By 2016, the dedicated e-commerce site will feature approximately 500 items – from apparel and jewelry, to stationery and accessories – by more than 20,000 women in nearly two dozen countries. 

“The challenge for small women-owned businesses – and particularly women artisans – is that they have a fantastic product, but they may not have the size or scale to sell in our brick-and-mortar stores," Leslie Dach, Walmart's executive VP corporate affairs, said at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting in New York City. "This commitment today gives these women access to an established set of customers on Walmart.com, as well as the benefit of the company's knowledge about customers, packaging and promotions."