In an effort to add new Canadian-made products to its stores, Home Depot Canada will hold a “Meet the Buyer” event on Nov. 24 in Kanata, Ontario. Small and medium-sized Ontario and Quebec-based manufacturers with an innovative home improvement product or technology are invited to apply. There will be no charge to the vendor, who can pitch their product to a buyer from Home Depot and also showcase their item in a tradeshow-style event attended by members of Home Depot’s merchandising team. Presentations will be given by senior representatives of Home Depot Canada, the Ontario government and others.
Manufacturers can begin the application by visiting Home Depot Canada’s Innovation for Sustainability (IfS), a partnership between Home Depot, the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, the Quebec Ministry of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade and The Summerhill Group. Applications will be accepted online until Oct. 31.
To qualify, a vendor’s product must be innovative; intended for the home improvement customer; and designed, manufactured or assembled in either Ontario or Quebec.
Products meeting the above criteria will be further assessed on a number of additional business criteria, which will include consideration of efforts that the manufacturer has made to integrate environmental or social sustainability into their business or products.
Manufacturers with promising products will earn a defined trial period with the Home Depot Canada in select stores. Products that prove to be successful during the trial will be scaled up to larger markets, with an ultimate goal of national availability.
This is the second year of a successful program developed to assist Ontario manufacturers of innovative and environmentally preferred products to reach new markets. Building on this success, Home Depot enlisted the government of Quebec as a new partner for this year's event to bring these same opportunities to Quebec manufacturers.
The first IfS “Meet the Buyer” event for manufacturers took place in London, Ontario, in December 2010. As a result, 20 products from 13 manufacturers were trialed by The Home Depot Canada in select Ontario stores.