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Alibaba Singles Day aims to go global

By Chris Dawson November 12, 2018 - 11:15 am

Alibaba‘s 10th annual 11.11 Global Shopping Festival 24-hour sale generated a record-breaking RMB213.5 billion (US$30.8 billion) of sales, an increase of 27% compared to last year. During the Alibaba Singles Day event, their logistics network processed more than a billion delivery orders on the day.

This is the first time that Alibaba-owned Cainiao Smart Logistics Network has handled a billion orders in a single day – up from the record 812 million packages last year.

To put this into perspective, Alibaba Singles Day sales are now more than double sales on Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the US combined.

Encouragingly, over 40% of consumers bought from international brands with 237 brands topped RMB100 million in GMV, including leading international brands Apple, Dyson, Kindle, Estée Lauder, L’Oréal, Nestle, Gap, Nike and Adidas.

The top countries selling to China were Japan, the US, South Korea, Australia and Germany. Notably absent from the list is the UK although this may be more to do with the fact we are no longer a major manufacturing country and more a nation of retailers.

Promotions targeted overseas Chinese across Asia, in the US and Australia. Brand participation hit 180,000 domestic and foreign labels. And for the first time, recently acquired unit Lazada held its own single-day shopping festival in its six Southeast Asian markets.

Alibaba are expressing a desire to keep growing its reach across the globe and if the Alibaba Singles Day spreads to the West then eventually this could eclipse the Black Friday weekend or perhaps turn what Amazon has already stretched into a 10 day sale into a sale lasting from the 11th of November through Thanksgiving and the Black Friday weekend. Certainly there isn’t enough consumer spending power for a Singles Day and a Black Friday sale in the same month.

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