After Shopping Event, Alibaba to Deliver 7.6 Billion Packages

China's e-commerce giant Alibaba Group said total value of goods transacted during its Singles' Day shopping festival on November 11, was 91.2 billion yuan (US$14.32 billion), up 60% from 2014, while its smaller rival in on-line sales, JD.com said its sales topped last year's orders. JD.com does not reveal its total Singles Day sales but said it received 14m orders last year.

Alibaba’s Group HQ in Hangzhou  - credit T. Lombard
Alibaba’s Group HQ in Hangzhou - credit T. Lombard

With the on-line shopping done, the e-commerce companies are now facing the massive task of delivering some 7.6 billion packages of high-quality, authentic global brands and imported goods to its Chinese and overseas consumers.
Alibaba said its logistics partner and affiliate, Cainiao Logistics, received 467 million delivery orders during the 24-hour shopping period, more than 15 times the daily average of 30 million orders, and representing a 68% year-over-year increase from 278 million orders in 2014 11.11. The logistics division also generated more than 120 million e-waybills.
Cainiao said it is cooperating with domestic operators (China Post, YTO, Yunda and STO) and regional specialists such as SF Express in South China, as well as foreign delivery companies which together own more than 176,000 outlets across China – up from some 50,000 in November last year – and can handle about 35 million packages a day.

Online consumption feast
This year’s Singles Day, which Alibaba markets as the "11.11 Global Shopping Festival,” featured more than six million products from over 40,000 merchants, up from 27,000 vendors last year. Of the total value of transactions, 68% was through orders from mobile devices.
“Singles Day”, also known as Double Eleven in reference to the day on which it falls, originally started in 1993 by students in Nanjing who were looking for an excuse to buy themselves presents. In 2009, Alibaba co-opted the event into an online consumption-feast, featuring steep discounts and other promotions aimed at attracting droves of customers.
The event, which is China's equivalent of U.S. shopping event Cyber Monday, has become the world's biggest day for internet shopping on the global retail calendar and is now larger than both Cyber Monday and Black Friday combined. In addition, it is a closely watched barometer of Alibaba's performance, as well as a gauge of Chinese consumption as economic growth is slowing.

Nol van Fenema

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