Lowe’s wants to expand the inventory of products sold in its stores and online in a novel way. The home improvement giant invited business owners and inventors to participate in a new product-pitching event called “Into The Blue.”
Applicants have until August 14 to submit “ready-for-market products” on Lowe’s website. Finalists will be asked to pitch their products at a “Shark Tank” style event in Charlotte, North Carolina, Nov. 2 and 3.
“Into the Blue: Lowe’s Product Pitch Event gives entrepreneurs the chance to take their business to the next level,” Bill Boltz, Lowe’s executive vice president for merchandising, said in a statement. “We are inviting businesses of any size to apply for Into the Blue because the more innovative products we uncover, the more solutions we can provide to our customers to make their homes and lives better.”
Selected businesses chosen for the next phase will be notified in September. Lowe’s plans to order $5 million worth of products to be sold in more than 1,700 retail stores and on the company website.
Lowe’s said in its statement each product should be “unique” and “serve Lowe’s customers.” The event will be held at the new Lowe’s Tech Hub, expected to be completed this fall. Besides pitches, the event will include networking opportunities via a supplier fair and breakout sessions.
“Lowe’s began as a small business more than 100 years ago, so we understand what it means to help a business succeed and the benefits it brings to their communities,” said Sarah Dodd, Lowe’s senior vice president for global merchandising, said in the statement.
“We look forward to helping these businesses, especially often over-looked entrepreneurs, on their journey to be featured at a big box retailer.”
In 2021, Lowe’s partnered with Shark Tank’s Daymond John for its first virtual pitch program aimed at supporting small business owners and entrepreneurs with home improvement products. More than 1,300 participants competed with five finalists awarded grants of varied values. The Handle and Haul was named champion.
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