SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Alibaba Group (BABA.N) will kick off its annual 24-hour buying extravaganza on Monday with offers and deep discounts galore, and a efficiency by American popstar Taylor Swift to high all of it, because it pushes to rake in another record Singles’ Day gross sales.
FILE PHOTO: A emblem of Alibaba Group is seen at an exhibition through the World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, China May 16, 2019. REUTERS/Jason Lee
This 12 months’s Nov. 11 bash comes because the $486 billion Chinese retail juggernaut navigates by means of a significant turning level, the resignation in September of its flamboyant co-founder Jack Ma as chairman, and seems to be to lift as much as $15 billion by way of a share sale in Hong Kong as early as this month.
Akin to Black Friday and Cyber Monday within the United States, Singles’ Day, a buying fest initially promoted by Alibaba Chairman and CEO Daniel Zhang in 2009, has since grown quickly to turn into the world’s greatest on-line gross sales occasion.
Alibaba noticed gross sales value $30 billion on its platforms on Singles’ Day final 12 months, dwarfing $7.9 billion U.S. on-line gross sales for Cyber Monday. Yet, the 27% gross sales development was the bottom within the occasion’s 10-year historical past, spurring a seek for recent concepts.
“This year will be the 11th 11.11 festival, with more than 200,000 brands participating, one million new products on offer and over 500 million users are expected to participate – about 100 million more than last year,” Alibaba mentioned in an announcement.
Taylor Swift, whose newest album “Lover” has damaged information in China, will headline this 12 months’s opening gala alongside native celebrities like Jackson Yee. Swift additionally carried out at Prime Day live performance for rival Amazon.com (AMZN.O) earlier this 12 months.
Alibaba’s Singles’ Day celebrations have featured U.S. singer Mariah Carey and musician Pharrell Williams previously.
Livestreamers are additionally set to play a outstanding function in product promotions this 12 months, as Alibaba more and more turns to on-line video influencers to extend engagement on its app.
It has partnered with Kuaishou and Douyin, two standard Chinese video apps, to assist it broadcast product promotions, and within the run-up to the present even roped in U.S. superstar entrepreneur Kim Kardashian, who launched a Tmall stream to advertise her KKW line of magnificence merchandise.
For a graphic on Alibaba’s Singles’ Day, see right here
Its heavy advertising and marketing marketing campaign underscores intensifying competitors with smaller rivals corresponding to Pinduoduo PDD.N which have outsmarted Alibaba in second- and third-tier cities with deep discounts and group-buying offers.
Alibaba has been making an attempt to broaden its buyer base past its core first- and second-tier metropolis customers to much less developed areas to fight slowing retail gross sales development, describing it as a key technique for the agency this 12 months.
Pinduoduo can be additionally holding its personal “Singles’ Day” occasions on the identical day.
The e-commerce upstart has signaled its intentions to interrupt Alibaba and rival JD.com’s (JD.O) stronghold on rich Chinese customers, saying that half of the app’s customers now hail from first- and second-tier cities.
Alibaba additionally faces challenges of a regulatory crackdown and a slowing economic system, damage by U.S.-China commerce tensions.
Ahead of the Nov. 11 occasion, China warned Alibaba and JD.com (JD.O) to cease practices that could possibly be deemed as monopolistic, state media reported earlier this month.
Reporting by Josh Horwitz; Editing by Miyoung Kim and Himani Sarkar