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Alibaba Singles Day "exceeds 42 billion dollars, but growth rate collapses, East Asia News & Top Stories



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SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Chinese giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd received a record of 213.5 billion yuan ($ 42.28 billion) on Sunday (November 11th) during its 24-hour online retail trade , but the annual increase in the event has fallen to the slowest pace.

Buyers in China and around the world have launched boilies, including iPhone, furniture and powdered milk since the morning, with Alibaba sales of around $ 10 billion in the first hour after midnight.

Singles Day, dubbed the "Double 11", is the largest online sales event in the world, surpassing US, Black Friday and Cyber ​​Monday sales.

The Chinese event was originally a student's celebration of novelty to celebrate it was unique, countering Valentine's Day, but has grown since then in a one month online shopping festival that reaches its peak with a 24-hour sale on 11 November.

This year, the company exceeded the record sales of 168 billion yuan, registered in the previous year, in only sixteen hours.

Despite the record, the annual growth rate of sales fell from 39% to 27% at the end of the analyst's estimates, and the lowest rate in the 10-year history of the event.

This comes as a company that is struggling with a weaker sales outlook amid a tightening of trade tensions with the US that have taken a bite out of China's economy.

Earlier this month, the company revised its sales outlook by 4 to 6 percent throughout the year, sending new chills through the company's stock price, which fell by about 16 percent this year after almost doubling in 2017.

To compensate, the company will take less commission from its short-term platforms to keep the brands and attract new buyers, he said.

The increase in online sales is also slowing down in the mega-east cities of the country, including Shanghai and Beijing, and Alibaba said that about 75% of new users have moved to "less developed" areas.

While small appliances and cosmetics were strong on Sunday, sales of large ticket items, including large appliances, slowed alongside a slowdown in the property market, Alibaba Vice President Joe Tsai said.

"If people do not buy new homes, they do not buy household appliances," he said.

Bigger and bigger

Despite gentler growth, executives appreciated Sunday at a Shanghai press event, attended by about 800 journalists who watched live sales ticketing.

"Today we have reached 200 billion yuan, but we have to change. We need to continue to change to reach 300 billion or 500 billion euros," said CEO Daniel Zhang, who is credited as original Single Market architect.

Alibaba kicked off this year's sales with a gala event including American singer Mariah Carey, an impressive Japanese Beyonce and a Cirque du Soleil show.

Expected to be the company's final sale in November with founder and chairman Jack Ma at the helm, and Mr. Zhang will take over as president next year, the company said in September.

At this year's event, the company said it had worked with 180,000 brands in over 200 countries and, just before midnight, sent over one billion packages.

A disproportionately high number of sales is recorded in the first minutes of 24-hour spending spree, when transactions are recorded for items that have been suspended.

The company set about $ 1 billion in the first minute and twenty-five seconds after midnight.

Analysts said sales continue to be channeled by competing events, including the "618" festival, led by rival Alibaba, JD.com, in June.

"With a growing number of promotions a year, consumers no longer feel that Double 11 is the only opportunity to get good bargains," said Pedro Yip, partner of consulting firm Oliver Wyman.

"Having said that, there are more consumers who still enjoy 11-fold shopping than those who do not," he said.

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