Facebook Inc.'s (FB) - Get Facebook, Inc. Class A Report business chat and collaboration app Workplace won a deal with Walmart Stores Inc. (WMT) - Get Walmart Inc. Report today, positioning it to better compete with the likes of Slack and Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) - Get Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) Report Teams application, TechCrunch reported.
Walmart's 2.2 million employees will start using Workplace in stages, with early use starting at Sam's Club before the app opens to all team members. Walmart employees are expected to use Workplace to share photos of product displays, broadcast company news using livestream features and utilize automatic translation to better communicate with operations in different continents.
Workplace is like an enterprise version of Facebook designed specifically for businesses, TechCrunch said. Since completing closed beta testing about one year ago, Workplace has racked up close to 14,000 businesses as clients.
Workplace is entering a competitive market, though. Microsoft announced plans yesterday to thwart Slack's threat with renewed focus on its Teams application for Office 365. There's also Chatter from Salesforce.com Inc. (CRM) - Get salesforce.com, inc. Report and other startups taking aim at the enterprise communications market.
Workplace might even have to compete within Walmart's business for the top spot. Walmart said it brought Workplace in to "complement other tools." Walmart's Labs division was previously Slack's largest customer, and the retailer hasn't admitted to quitting Slack yet.
Facebook shares traded up 0.6% to $163.87 early Tuesday afternoon. Walmart stock was up 0.3% to $79.40.
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