Figure of the week : 11/11


What was originally a day for Chinese singles, is now the most intense shopping day in the world, first launched in 2009 by Daniel Zhang, CEO of the Alibaba Group and Jack Ma, its founder.

« If people are still single, we can offer them the best and greatest choice and fun to shop online. Then they may feel less alone, said Daniel Zhang when he presented the event 11 years ago.    


On Chinese 11/11 Day, these are incredibly low prices and sales of 38 billion dollars realized in 24 hours, compared to 30.8 in 2018, breaking a record for this 11th edition! And a first billion dollars in sales exceeded in just 28 seconds.


But beyond these spectacular figures, enthusiasm for the phenomenon has seen a certain drop off. This year for instance, sales were expected to be higher this year, with the extension of the scope to South-East Asia via the subsidiary Lazada. Could the impressive Chinese 11/11 Day become commonplace? It would certainly seem so.


And what about fast shopping and over-consumption, celebrated by this great event, when trade today tends to encourage more rational and responsible purchasing and reducing the environmental impact? All the transactions, often compulsive, made on 11/11 will result in 1.3 billion packages being shipped the next day throughout China. 30% of these products will not satisfy their buyers and will be sent back the other way.


It’s a unique sales event – one that is increasingly tinged with indecency…


By Jean-Marc Megnin, General Manager, Altavia Shoppermind