At Macy’s, we know that we are at our best when our business fully reflects the rich diversity of our colleagues, customers, and communities.
Our latest partnership is a direct reflection of this. We teamed up with the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) on a series called “Mind Your Business with Mahisha,” which follows self-made mogul and Curls Founder & CEO Mahisha Dellinger as she helps female entrepreneurs take their small businesses to the next level.
On Saturday, August 25, we watched Nata Dvir, general business manager for beauty, and Shawn Outler, EVP of licensed businesses, food services and multicultural initiatives, take a surprise pitch meeting with Gloria Williams, founder of Footnanny, an aromatherapy foot product that has been named as one of “Oprah’s Favorite Things.”
As our product assortment continues to grow and evolve, we’re focused on ensuring our approach embraces all kinds of beauty. This is one of the reasons we made the decision to carry Footnanny which is now available on macys.com and in 10 select stores around the nation.
“Skincare is the fastest growing category in the industry, with bath and body at the forefront,” Nata said. “Footnanny is a great compliment to our existing breadth of products. Not only does it smell and feel great, but Gloria had already built a loyal customer base.”
Nata worked with Shawn to set Footnanny up for success, advising on packaging, pricing and gifting ideas. Their teams worked together to ensure the successful launch and growth of this emerging brand – a process Shawn has a lot of experience with. Every year, her team works with high potential minority- and women-owned businesses in an exclusive retail vendor development program called The Workshop at Macy’s.
“Partnering with Gloria on Footnanny felt like a natural alignment, given all we do at Macy’s to ensure our business reflects the diversity of our customers and communities,” Shawn said. “Her entrepreneurial spirit helped her build a successful business so far, and we are proud to partner with her to see her business grow even further.”
“We were so touched with her story,” Nata said. “Her excitement was truly sincere; she was almost in tears! It makes you realize what a special place Macy’s is for our customers and our partners.”
Coast to Coast asked Footnanny founder Gloria Williams all about her Macy’s experience. Read the interview below:
I grew up in a small town called Dixmoor, IL. My parents are from Alabama, and I’m the only girl out of four kids.
My momma was known as the “Rubbing Healer,” and she would take me through the neighborhood as she gave our sickly neighbors the old fashioned rub-down. We would always start with a foot and leg massage which always made them smile – and sometimes even cry – with joy. My path to Footnanny was laid out from the beginning.
My first thought was, “Oh Jesus! Is this really happening now?” It was a dream come true and a nightmare at the same time. I said to myself, “Gloria, you know your brand, and this is the exact moment you’ve worked so hard for. Now pull it together, take a deep breath and help me, Jesus!”
Nata mentioned that Footnanny would be the first foot cream at Macy’s, which really excited me.
Shawn’s The Workshop at Macy’s program just blew me away, as I’ve always searched for mentors within the beauty industry that I could lean on for help. Two prayers answered in the same day!
I’m excited for my customers to be able to go into a Macy’s store and purchase the product quickly and easily. Being on macys.com takes the pressures of online sales off my Footnanny team, and they’ll be able to focus on some of our other initiatives.
Guidance and encouragement, both of which I have already begun to receive from the Macy’s team.
If you feel in your soul that you should be an entrepreneur...DO IT! Put in the work and focus on the goal. Find a mentor or two to lean on for advice and guidance. Know that when you make a mistake, it’s okay, because you will learn and become stronger.