Markets

Alibaba racks up $35b in Singles' Day sales

Alibaba racks up $35b in Singles' Day sales

The 1-day online shopping event has passed $20.3 billion in sales 7 hours before the end of the sale.

Alibaba, the Chinese online retailer akin to Amazon who's also eyeing global expansion, uses Singles' Day to test its supply-chain and update local Chinese retailers' computers systems so that they can get in on the event by acting as delivery and storage centers.

If you're not excited about Singles Day, we're here to tell you why you should be.

Additionally, the retailer hit a record $18 billion in just 13 hours, eclipsing last year's record of $17.8 billion in 24 hours.

Alibaba seized on Double 11 as China's online answer to the late-November US "Black Friday" shopping rush. More than 140,000 brands will participate this year, Alibaba said.

US singer and producer Pharrell Williams, British pop star Jessie J and other celebrities will help launch this year's November 11 "Singles' Day", Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba said.

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E-commerce's huge growth in China has put New York-listed Alibaba neck-and-neck with Amazon as the world's most valuable e-commerce company, while also making Nasdaq-listed JD.com a Fortune 500 company.

The event has been adopted by Alibaba rivals such as JD.com, with merchants engaging in a cut-throat battle to slash prices and move goods.

Five minutes after midnight, Alipay was processing 256,000 payment transactions per second, doubling last year's high-water mark, Alibaba said.

But environmentalists complain of ecological harm, accusing Alibaba and other e-commerce companies of fuelling a culture of excessive over-consumption and mountains of waste.

Alibaba's 11.11 has grown beyond an annual online shopping bonanza to become a key driving force in transforming the lifestyle of Chinese consumers today through modern technologies. Greenpeace said Singles' Day deliveries past year created 130,000 tonnes of packaging waste - less than 10 per cent of which is recycled.

The 2017 shopping day had a 39 percent increase in sales with at least 82 brands earning about $15 million in sales in 24 hours.


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