In a record-breaking massive sale, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba made $31 billion worth of sales during the annual Singles Day event.
On 11 November, Alibaba broke its own record from last year in just 16.5 hours. By the time the day ended, the e-commerce giant had raked in a whopping total of $31 billion in sales. While the exact figures are yet to be revealed, the enormity of the sale was estimated from the pre-sale bookings that opened a few weeks ago. Estée Lauder emerged as the most favorite brand with $143 million in pre-bookings, while Apple saw iPhones worth $14 million getting booked. A survey found that buyers were expecting to spend 10% more on this Singles Day compared to the last (however, 2018 saw an increase of 28% in revenues compared to 2017).
The record is particularly surprising because the odds seemed stacked against Alibaba initially. The ongoing trade war with the USA and the slowing Chinese economy was speculated to have a negative effect on the country’s biggest e-commerce company. However, Alibaba proved everyone wrong.
Singles Day has a particularly interesting history of its own. The event has gained traction in China since the turn of the century, as a protest against Valentine’s Day. While the latter is a day of celebrating love, the former was meant for all the people who are single. Celebrated on November 11 each year, the event kept growing in popularity. In 2009, even Alibaba was forced to ride the gravy train; since then, every year Alibaba offers 24-hours massive discounts on this day.
Not just Alibaba but many other companies and even shops organize the sales. In fact, Singles Day is bigger than Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. The event has also begun gaining attention in nearby countries like Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Even the USA saw some companies like NIKE offering discounts on the occasion.