Alibaba sets Singles’ Day sales record with 8 hours still to go

Gladys Abbott
November 11, 2018

Matter of fact, the reason Singles' Day falls on November 11 every year is because of the number "1" represents a single person.

"With an increasing number of promotion events a year, consumers no longer feel that Double 11 is the only opportunity to get good bargains", said Pedro Yip, partner at consulting firm Oliver Wyman. Pre-sales prior to the event were brisk, with 33 brands on Tmall reporting 100 million-yuan worth of pre-orders, the company said.

"Alibaba is making use of all of its platforms to make Singles' Day a holiday that also includes dining and entertainment", said Jet Jing, president of Tmall, an e-commerce platform owned by Alibaba Group.

Alibaba's Singles' Day sale apparently is world's biggest sale even bigger than America's Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined.

Chinese e-commerce behemoth Alibaba raked in nearly $10 billion in the first hour of its Singles' Day sale which kicked off on Sunday.

Alibaba's Singles' Day surpassed Amazon's biggest shopping day of the year in less than 10 minutes.

Alibaba amplifies the attention with 24 hours of festivities that rotate each year through different cities in China. Hong Tao, an economics professor at Beijing Technology and Business University, said Singles Day encourages shoppers to prioritize cheap prices over high quality, causing them to purchase items they don't need. In just one second, 3,700 Singles' Day special edition MAC lipsticks were sold out.

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But surely Singles' Day can't be bigger than Black Friday, right?

Alibaba kicked off this year's sales with a gala event that featured U.S. singer Mariah Carey, a Japanese Beyonce impersonator and a shoe-shopping-themed Cirque du Soleil performance.

While sales growth remains steady, Alibaba's stock has dropped 16% this year amid economic uncertainties linked to brewing trade tensions between China and the United States.

Alibaba's Singles' Day sale is just not an online sale fest.

"Back in 2013, CNY 35 billion ($5.15 billion or roughly Rs. 34,523 crores) was our one-day GMV (gross merchandise volume)", said Chief Executive Officer Daniel Zhang in a live micro-blog posting on Alibaba's event.

Also known as Double 11, the shopping extravaganza will draw to a close at midnight.

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