Alibaba raises $1bn in 85 seconds during Singles’ Day sale

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Alibaba

Chinese internet giant Alibaba raked in $1bn (£780m) in just 85 seconds during yesterday’s Singles’ Day sale in China.

The e-commerce company – China’s equivalent of Amazon – took a record total of $30.7bn (£23.8bn) in revenue over the one-day shopping bonanza, an annual event similar to Black Friday.

That total marks a 27% rise in revenue compared with last year’s Singles’ Day haul, Sky News reports.

However, the figures also mark the “slowest rate of growth” since the event began ten years ago, the broadcaster adds. In 2017, Alibaba recorded a 39% year-on-year increase in revenue.

The figures include sales from across Alibaba’s “various online retail services”, such as AliExpress and Taobao, and orders settled using the firm’s online payment system Alipay, says The Daily Telegraph.

Tech products account for a fair chunk of purchases, with Apple taking the title of top-selling smartphone maker this year, says US-based site CNBC News.

Apple sales surpassed those of Chinese mobile giants Huawei and Xiaomi, while Samsung placed a lowly eighth.

What is Singles’ Day?

The sales event was started by Alibaba in 2009 and is the “antithesis” to Valentine’s Day, notes the BBC. It is always held on 11 November, or 11/11, in a nod to this celebration of being single.

Around 180,000 brands are included in the mass sales, which were extended to the West last year through the Alibaba’s AliExpress shopping app.