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@WalmartLabs' Shopycat seeks to bridge gap between social media, shopping

Offer gift recommendations for friends

SAN BRUNO, Calif. — Walmart is looking to help holiday shoppers find the perfect gift this season with the launch of a new social shopping application.

Shopycat, developed by @WalmartLabs, is a social platform that's available on Facebook and is designed to offer gift ideas for friends based on their social media activity (i.e., a post, a "like," or a profile update). Those who use the app not only can find and buy gifts for friends — which can be purchased via Walmart stores, Walmart.com and other such sites as RedEnvelope, Barnes & Noble and ThinkGeek — as well as help users purchase items based on friends' general interests, it also provides recommendations to users' friends for what they want as holiday gifts (via a "My Info" tab).

"As human beings, we are inherently social and shopping is one of the most social activities we engage in," Walmart SVP global e-commerce and @WalmartLabs co-founder Venky Harinarayan said. "Our vision is to delight consumers and Shopycat is a first step in that direction with social and shopping coming together on the scale of Walmart. At Walmart, we see social commerce fueling the next generation of e-commerce where online and retail stores bring a continuous shopping experience to millions of users.  We plan to continue experimenting with products as we build new social apps over the coming year."

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