Business

Chinese shoppers spend over $100 billion in shopping fest

A worker sorting packages for delivery at a warehouse during the Singles' Day shopping festival in Beijing on November 11.   | Photo Credit: AFP

Chinese consumers spent over a hundred billion dollars during this year’s Singles’ Day shopping festival, signaling a rebound in consumption as China recovers from the coronavirus pandemic and a battering of the economy.

From November 1 to November 11, shoppers spent 498.2 billion yuan ($75.1 billion) on Taobao and Tmall, the e-commerce platforms operated by Alibaba, China’s largest e-commerce company.

The final sales figure exceeded last year’s $38.4 billion over 24 hours, after Alibaba extended its sales period this year for the first time as it sought to help boost sales for merchants affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

On rival platform JD.com, consumers racked up 271.5 billion yuan ($40.9 billion) in sales over the same period.

The annual Singles’ Day shopping festival, the world’s largest of its kind, offers shoppers generous discounts on a variety of products, from fresh produce to luxury items.

Merchants big and small, from small online stores to international brands like Apple, Nike and L’Oreal, participate in the festival by slashing prices on their products.

The annual shopping festival is closely watched as a barometer for consumption in China. Alibaba, which pioneered the shopping festival, held its first Singles’ Day sale in 2009. Over the past decade, the shopping bonanza has become the world’s largest, regularly dwarfing Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales in the U.S.

The Singles’ Day festival is named as such because the main shopping day falls on November 11, which when written numerically as 11.11 resembles “bare branches", a Chinese expression for the single and unattached.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2021 6:01:16 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/chinese-shoppers-spend-over-100-billion-in-shopping-fest/article33079921.ece

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