Saturday, September 19, 2020
Home Business Daymond John says he hopes a million diverse small businesses apply to...

Daymond John says he hopes a million diverse small businesses apply to directly pitch products to Lowe’s

“Shark Tank” investor Daymond John told CNBC on Tuesday that he believes his new effort with Lowe’s to help diverse entrepreneurs can have widespread appeal — and a big impact. 

“You can get a million applicants, hopefully. I want people to step up to this,” he said on “Squawk on the Street.” “When you talk about diversity … you’re not only talking about people of color, you’re talking about females. You’re talking about LGBTQ, you’re talking about veterans, so this could be a lot of people.” 

The initiative is called “Making it… With Lowe’s,” and it gives minority-owned small businesses an opportunity to have their products on the home-improvement retailer’s shelves and website. The application window launches Tuesday and is open through Sept. 25.

Applicants will be narrowed down to eventually five finalists, according to a Lowe’s press release. John will help mentor and prepare them for their pitch directly to Lowe’s CEO Marvin Ellison and other executives. 

John, who also is CEO of clothing brand FUBU, said the opportunity to bring a product to Lowe’s eliminates a key hurdle for many up-and-coming entrepreneurs: distribution. 

“Often that is the most important part. After you know you have a product, you know you can distribute it. Now, how do you get it to the masses?” he said. “They wanted to give people this vehicle to do so, without taking any percentage of their company.” 

In an interview earlier Tuesday on “Squawk on the Street,” Ellison said Lowe’s idea for the initiative stemmed from the demand for small business grants that launched in May in response to the economic challenges of the coronavirus pandemic. He said that $55 million program, which targeted minority-owned businesses along with those in rural communities, has received over 800,000 applications. 

“The demand from this program led us to understand that there’s a lot more that we should be doing,” said Ellison, who has been vocal about the need for corporate America to step up its efforts on diversity. 

Lowe’s intends to have finalists selected by the end of this year, with the result of the challenge being unveiled early next year, according to the press release. 

John said for him this is different from his role on “Shark Tank,” since he is not offering up his own capital to make an investment in exchange for company equity and a role in helping the company grow. Instead, he said he is able to approach it more as a consumer.

“I don’t have to think about the personal manner on how I should operate it, how I’m going to get income from it,” he said. “All I can do right now is care about, does this solve a problem? Does this have empathy for a customer? Is it making it lighter, faster or stronger, or saving time for somebody? … I already know distribution is there.”  

— CNBC’s Melissa Repko contributed to this story.

Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to Shark Tank,” on which Daymond John is a co-host.

Read More

- Advertisment -

Most Popular

50% Discount In Water, Power Bills In J&K’s Economic Relief Amid Covid

Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha announced a major economic relief this afternoon.Srinagar: An economic relief package of Rs 1,350 crore was announced this afternoon for Jammu and Kashmir's ailing business sector - hit hard by prolonged Covid lockdown and the outbreak - by Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, who took oath last month as the union territory's L-G.…

‘Dear Fellow Cong People…’: Suspended Leader Sanjay Jha Needles Party on Criticising PM Over Farm Bil…

A day after he appeared to defend the Narendra Modi government on the issue of farm bills, suspended Congress leader Sanjay Jha told Congress to stop the “mindless obsession” of opposing the prime minister.Jha, who was sacked from the party in July for "anti-party activities" and "breach of discipline", in a tweet on Saturday morning…

Over 3,000 Ceasefire Violations By Pakistan Along LoC, Highest In 17 Years

The Army has given a "befitting reply" to the ceasefire violations, the government has said (File)Srinagar: There have been 3,186 ceasefire violations by Pakistan along the LoC (Line of Control) in Jammu over the past eight months (from January 1 to September 7), the government told Parliament this week.This is the highest number in a…

India overtakes US in highest number of covid recoveries, cures 96,000 patients in a day

Home >News >India >India overtakes US in highest number of covid recoveries, cures 96,000 patients in a day Mumbai: A BMC officer imposes fine of ₹200 to a bystander on road for not wearing mask, at Fort area, in Mumbai (PTI) 1 min read . Updated: 19 Sep 2020, 10:57 AM IST Written By Ravi…

Recent Comments