Alibaba Group has kicked off its annual 11.11 shopping festival, named this year as the “2015 Alibaba Group 11.11 Global Shopping Celebration.” Created by Alibaba in 2009, 11.11 day now generates more sales than Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined.
At this year’s 2015 Annual New E-Commerce Entrepreneurship Summit held in Hangzhou, China, Alibaba Group chief executive officer Daniel Zhang announced that globalization and offline-to-online (O2O) will serve as key themes of this year’s 11.11 shopping festival. He also noted that there will be innovative new opportunities to improve the overall customer shopping experience. At the same time, he revealed the launch of an inaugural 11.11 countdown gala celebration that will be attended by well-known celebrities and directed by Chinese film director, Feng Xiao Gang. It will be held on November 10 and broadcast live in China.
“This year’s 11.11 focus will be on both globalization and O2O, as these are the core to our overall corporate strategy. In addition, this is the first time ever that Alibaba Group will have an 11.11 countdown event to promote the sales day to celebrate the potential for limitless innovation that technology has provided for all of us,” said Mr. Zhang.
O2O initiatives will continue to be the key focuses of Alibaba’s 11.11 this year. Approximately 100,000 brick-and-mortar stores in China, such as Suning, and Intime, will establish strategic O2O collaboration agreements with Alibaba Group, which will cover marketing, customer management, post-sales management, logistics, and more. Through these omni-channel initiatives, customers will be able to participate in the 11.11 shopping festival no matter if they are online or offline.
“Globalization is a critical priority for Alibaba Group’s strategy in 2015, as evidenced by the very encouraging growth in the number of international agreements and activities over the past several months,” said Mr. Zhang. “We are working closely with international brands, foreign governments, trade associations, and global retailers to make this year’s 11.11 shopping festival a truly and unprecedentedly global shopping experience for consumers, and a gateway for new brands and companies trying to reach the China marketplace and our 367 million active users.”
The 11.11 shopping festival began in 2009 with just 27 merchant participants as an event for when it was known as Taobao Mall for merchants and consumers to raise awareness of the value in online shopping. Last year, on November 11, 2014, more than 27,000 brands and merchants participated in Alibaba Group’s 11.11 Shopping Festival, which generated 278 million orders for a total of US$9.3 billion (RMB 57.1 billion) of gross merchandise volume (“GMV”) settled through Alipay on Alibaba’s China and international retail marketplaces, with mobile purchases accounting for 42.6% of total GMV. Consumers from over 217 countries and regions were able to select from more than one million products through mobile applications and e-commerce websites.
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