China gripped by £13bn Singles Day sales madness

By Oliver Smith 11 November 2016
Last year Daniel Craig attended Alibaba's Singles Day celebration gala, along with CEO Jack Ma.

The world's biggest one-day sale just got even bigger.

There are some mind-boggling figures emerging from Singles Day is China.

The one-day shopping celebration of single-dom has already netted retailer Alibaba a record-breaking £13bn, and it’s not even over yet.

Read more: What the heck is… Singles Day?

You simply can’t imagine the sheer scale of Singles Day.

Big just got bigger

Last year Brits spent a whopping £3.3bn across the whole Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend, China is on track to splurge more than £16bn in total.

It’s already the world’s biggest one-day sale, but this year it’s on track to grow even bigger.

When I visited China in 2014, a week after Singles Day, I saw mountains of boxes still piled outside of people’s houses. They had ordered so much stuff online that people were literally struggling to unpack everything in their houses.

Last night David Beckham, Kobe Bryant and Scarlett Johansson even appeared as part of Alibaba’s Singles Day celebration gala, the latest in a long line of high-profile celebrity endorsements like Daniel Craig last year which have helped drive awareness of the one-day sale across China.

Singles Day may have started as a simple university student push-back against the commercialisation and rise of Valentine’s Day, but today, in raw commercial terms anyway, it has more than surpassed it.