Today, Alibaba, the online retail giant, surpassed records for the largest shopping day across the globe. The company reported that it was able to record sales amounting to more than $1 billion (£770.5 million) within a period of approximately 85 seconds. It was also just shy of $10 billion during the first hour of the 24-hour spree.
The record sales came during Singles Day, the largest online retail festival in the world. After 16 hours, the total sales of Alibaba was already able to reach more than $24 billion.
Alibaba was also able to surpass its revenue total for the previous year amounted to $25.3 billion, with several hours still remaining.
The figure exceeds the estimated $4 billion that was spent by consumers during the Prime Day of Amazon last July and is larger as compared to the sales of Cyber Monday and Black Friday combined.
Singles Day, is the informal holiday of Alibaba for singles. The e-commerce giant launched the occasion to celebrate the unattached as an antithesis to those who are romantically involved on Valentine’s Day. Thus, it is a celebration for people who are not in relationships. Online discounts have been offered every 11th of November since it first became a shopping festival in 2009. This year’s event was preceded by a gala that featured performances from a Japanese Beyoncé impersonator, Mariah Carey, a shoe-shopping-themed performance from Cirque du Soleil. It also boasted the participation from more than 180,000 brands.
However, the sales boost comes amid some uncertainty for the Chinese e-commerce giant since it reduced its forecast for the full-year revenue of the company by as much as six percent because of some concerns that involve the on-going trade dispute of China with the United States of America.
According to the Billionaires Index of Bloomberg, Jack Ma, the chairman of the company, has already seen his fortune drop by more than $8 billion since January.
Last October, Alibaba launched two new data centres in London which marked the first expansion of the company into the United Kingdom.