All e-commerce records broken after Alibaba passes €7bn on Singles Day

11 Nov 2014

China’s Singles Day has quickly established itself as the world’s most lucrative commercial spending spree, with Alibaba making more than €7bn in just one day, surpassing Cyber Monday and Black Friday in the US.

The online event that originated from Nanjing University in 1993 and named after the fact today appears as 11.11 on the calendar, has morphed into an event for single Chinese people to spend their hard-earned money on frivolous gadgets and household items.

The event is being effectively orchestrated by Alibaba, which has gone from being a Chinese e-commerce website to one of the most well-known brands in the tech world due to its recent IPO on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The IPO hit a record high of US$92.70 per share.

Marketed as the 11.11 Shopping Festival, at the time of writing, the company has made more than €7bn from online sales with 42pc coming from mobile sales, and they day is not even over.

It made its first €1bn in just under 18 minutes.

Far exceeding expectations

This has surpassed even Alibaba’s expectations, having only recently spoken to CNBC about how it expected to make about 50bn yuan (€6.5bn) over the course of the day, which would have been 40pc higher than Singles Day in 2013.

Elsewhere, Xiaomi, the Chinese smartphone manufacturer, has also broken a number of its records, with its VP Hugo Barra posting to Google+ that in the space of 12 hours the company sold 720,000 Mi phones, totalling 1bn yuan (€131m).

Accoding to GeekWire, Alibaba has jokingly spoken of its success so far, saying, “The UPS guy would have a nervous breakdown”, as 500m packages are due to be shipped as a result of Singles Day, almost one for every two people in China.

E-commerce image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic