BUY ME LOVE
Get up to speed with a big development in Asian business
Depending on when you read this, you will be either readying for a bargain bonanza or recovering in the aftermath of the biggest online shopping event the world has ever seen. ’Tis the month of Singles’ Day.
The Singles’ Day shopping phenomenon has come a long way since its creation. For years, in China at least, 11 November was merely a day for singles to find love. But in 2009, Alibaba launched an anti-Valentine’s shopping event on the day. Since then, it has grown meteorically, with thousands of vendors – including China’s e-commerce giants – tallying up a total of RMB 163.8 billion (HK$186 billion) in sales last year, a sum almost four times the take of the US’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined.
After jumps of 25 percent and 39 percent in sales in the past two years, the 2018 ‘Double 11’ is forecast to reach even higher heights. Many companies have made it a two-day event and are increasingly taking steps to make it easier for foreigners to get in on what has traditionally been a mainland Chinese affair.