Walmart focuses on diverse suppliers; etc.

Walmart focuses on diverse suppliers; etc.

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Walmart and Sam’s Club announced a new initiative to provide an expanded early payments program for diverse and minority-owned businesses.

The program will give suppliers convenient and consistent access to reliable funding sources. It’s part of an effort for Walmart and Sam’s Club to support the long-term growth and success of diverse businesses. In a press release announcing the investment, Walmart said it heard from suppliers that the biggest challenge to achieving growth is the ability to gain access to working capital.

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The interface, provided by the technology platform C2FO, will allow suppliers to hand-select invoices they request early payments on. The effort aims to make access to working capital affordable, transparent and more equitable.

“Today’s retail environment is particularly unique, and more than ever, businesses need to constantly change and grow to keep pace with customer needs,” the press release reads. “Through this latest effort, Walmart and Sam’s Club can help build equity and foster greater awareness of diverse and minority suppliers.”

US economy grows at 6.4% rate, set to boom in coming months

Backed by consumer spending, the US economy grew at a 6.4% rate last quarter — a sign of economic strength fueled by government aid and declining COVID-19 cases, according to the Associated Press.

The Commerce Department reported Thursday that the estimated gross domestic product (the total output of goods and services) accelerated in the January-March quarter from a 4.3% annual gain in the final quarter of 2020. Growth in the current April-June period is expected to grow even faster, potentially reaching a 10% annual pace or more.

Consumers are expected to be much more willing and able to travel, shop, eat out and resume their former spending habits, the article said. Economists point to widespread vaccinations, reopening of businesses, infusion of federal spending and healthy job gains to help sustain a steady growth. For 2021 as a whole, experts say the economy could expand close to 7%, which would mark the fastest calendar-year growth since 1984.

“This should be a gangbuster year,” Mark Zandi, a chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, told the AP. “I have been forecasting the economy for almost 30 years, and I can’t remember a time when I have been as confident as I am today.”

Amadeus releases business travel expense report

Travel has long represented the largest discretionary spend area for many companies. But a new report from Amadeus, a travel technology solution, outlines how mobile payments technology can help streamline and revolutionize business travel and expense.

Expense-free mobile payments can promise a new alternative to traditional systems and help companies save money. It can help companies enforce procurement policies in real time at the point of purchase. Business travelers can also feel more incentive to travel for work, as 38% of employees said they considered not traveling for business because of having to pay for expenses out of pocket.

The Amadeus report also gives insight into safety measures requested by employees, how payments innovation can revolutionize expense processes and Amadeus’ vision for expense-free corporate travel payments.

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