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Mercado Global Moves Fashion Forward at the Clinton Global Initiative

Posted on September 26, 2013 by Leah Vinton

Watch Executive Director, Ruth DeGolia, state Mercado Global's commitment to help women in rural Guatemala break the cycle of poverty in their communities. (jump to minute 47:40) 

New York, NY – Mercado Global was featured at the Clinton Global Initiative’s Annual Meeting as part of the “Creating Business at the Base of the Pyramid” plenary session on Thursday, September 26 before an audience of approximately 1,000 participants and members of the press. See the session here.

Ruth DeGolia, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Mercado Global, will present Mercado Global’s Commitment to Action, “Fashion Forward: Changing Global Sourcing Practices.” This commitment scales Mercado Global’s proven model to engage new partners within the fashion industry to incorporate sustainable sourcing practices and to economically empower Guatemalan women artisans by connecting them to sales channels internationally.

The fashion industry finds itself at a crucial and opportune moment. Events such as the recent factory collapse in Bangladesh at Rana Plaza, coupled with heightened-conscious consumerism and a growing market share of fair trade goods, have provoked a sea change in thinking about apparel and accessories sourcing. At the same time, however, highly-skilled artisans and cooperatives around the world still live in poverty because they lack the tools, capital, and business acumen to access higher-value international markets.

Through its innovative model, Mercado Global challenges current global sourcing practices and is committed to doubling its annual sales over two years and aggressively expanding retail partnerships, securing an additional 12 specialty retail chains, catalogs, and department stores, and 50 independent boutiques.

Mercado Global will also partner with an additional 112 indigenous women artisans by building 8 new co-operatives in rural Guatemala. With the increase in high-volume orders, artisans will be able to work at their desired level of employment and invest in self-identified areas of need, especially their children’s education.

In support of its Commitment to Action and scaling initiative, Mercado Global is also hosting a benefit, "Fashion Forward" on Thursday, October 3rd at the Center for Social Innovation in the Starrett-Lehigh Building at 601 West 26th Street, Suite 325, NY, NY.  

Tickets and more information at

The Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) convenes leaders to turn ideas into action. CGI Commitments to Action represent bold new ways that CGI members address global challenges-implemented through new methods of partnership and designed to maximize impact. Commitments can be small or large, global or local. No matter the size or scope, commitments help CGI members translate practical goals into meaningful and measurable results.




Posted in Clinton Global Initiative, Guatemala, Market Access, Women's Empowerment

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