11 November 2016 was celebrated in China as Singles’ Day, an event which has been widely compared to America’s Black Friday. Alibaba [the Chinese e-commerce giant] smashed its own records with an outrageous $17.8 billion sales volume within a period of 24 hours.
The total value of orders reported by Alibaba shows the company gracefully toppled its previous record of $14.3 billion set in 2015.
“That’s more than Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined,” CNN Money wrote.
Alibaba Group CEO, Daniel Zhang, who invented the Singles’ Day concept in 2009 when he led Alibaba’s T-Mall business said: “Back in 2013, $5.14 billion was our one-day GMV (gross merchandise volume). Now we can achieve it in one hour.”
He Mei, an employee of a health products company said: “Online shopping is getting more and more common. Young guys, especially those in their 20s, don’t really go out to buy things, and they buy pretty much everything online. It’s so easy and it saves time and money.”
Here are some pictograms from the online shopping festival:
Alibaba broadcast, which was a three-hour gala and partly a variety show, is comparable to MTV music awards. Former NBA star Kobe Bryant was present at the event as this year’s flag bearer.
Katy Perry canceled her appearance after citing a family emergency. She was also said to be traumatized following Hillary Clinton’s loss to Donald Trump at the just concluded U.S. presidential election.
Image: Jack Ma
Kitty Fok, managing director of IDC China, said in a statement: “We’re seeing an even bigger shift from offline shopping to online shopping. And there is also more of a focus on rural areas.
“People in the villages who could not do online shopping now have mobile phones and so can do that.”