Why Is Zuckerberg Meeting Wal-Mart BOSS?

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) chief executive Mark Zuckerberg and his senior management team are meeting with Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) executives this week to discuss ways to “deepen” their relationship. Zuckerberg and his team will spend two days at the retailer’s Bentonville, Arkansas, headquarters and meet with Wal-Mart chief executive Mike Duke, according to Reuters.

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While neither company offered any detail about the agenda for the meetings, Facebook said in a statement that it was looking forward to “deepen” its relationship with Wal-Mart, and noted that it could learn from the retailer’s “experience and management team about building a strong, durable and valuable company for the long term.”

In addition to Duke, Wal-Mart executives expected to attend the meeting include Walmart U.S. chief executive Bill Simon, Walmart International chief executive Doug McMillon, and Sam’s Club chief executive Rosalind Brewer.

“We appreciate and value the ongoing strategic partnership we have with Facebook,” Wal-Mart said in a statement. “Their help and support with testing new and innovative products and technologies to reach our customers has been invaluable.”

While Wal-Mart’s Facebook page has more than 17 million fans, the retailer is looking to match up to Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) in online sales as consumers increasingly shop using their computers, tablets, and smartphones.

Retailers like J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP), Gap (NYSE:GPS), and Nordstrom (NYSE:JWN) had earlier set up stores on Facebook, but shut them after not getting enough sales. New e-commerce startups such as Fab.com, Oodle, and Copious are also beginning to use social networks to sell goods.

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