Walmart partners with TikTok to sell merchandise while livestreaming

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Walmart Inc, which is looking to invest in TikTok, said on Thursday it would partner with the Chinese-owned video-sharing app to sell items seen on a livestream by creators featuring the retailer's fashion merchandise.

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Walmart said viewers on TikTok, which reaches 100 million U.S. users a month, can shop for fashion items featured in content from popular creators without having to leave the platform. The livestream will take place on Friday on Walmart's profile page on TikTok.

The livestream will feature national brands like Champion, Jordache, Kendall + Kylie and some private brands including Free Assembly, Scoop and Sofia Jeans, Walmart said.

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"It gives us a new way to engage with users and reach potential new customers," William White, Walmart's U.S. chief marketing officer, wrote in a blog post.

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The world's largest retailer's planned investment in TikTok will help it engage with younger audience and supercharge its battle against Amazon.com Inc in e-commerce and online advertising. But political tensions between the United States and China and uncertainty continue to stand in the way.

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Walmart's online sales have catapulted during the COVID-19 pandemic as customers avoiding crowds fearing they would contract the virus are shopping more from the comfort from their homes.

(Reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru)

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