During the 2015 Tmall 11:11 Global Shopping Festival gala in Beijing on November 11, 2015. (Photo credit: STR/AFP/Getty Images)
Alibaba is counting down to its annual shopping bonanza: the Singles Day shopping festival on November 11. Since it was launched seven years ago, it has become the largest shopping day on the planet. Last year, it generated sales of $14 billion, more than double the total online sales from Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined in the U.S.
This year’s Singles Day will be like no other. Alibaba wants to make it a global phenomenon. It has already kicked-off a series of warming up events including an eight-hour live-streamed “see now buy now” fashion show from Shanghai, where consumers can order anything they see on the catwalk in real time.
But Here is a sneak peek at what will happen. Continue reading
A driver uses his smartphone to pay the highway toll by way of Alipay in Hangzhou, China on September 21, 2016. (Photo credit STR/AFP/Getty Images)
Ten years ago, eBay lost the battle to conquer China’s e-commerce market to small upstart Alibaba. Ten years on, China’s e-commerce market has grown more than tenfold, and Alibaba has become a global conglomerate with its arms stretching across multiple disciplines such as payments, big data, Hollywood and more.
The game of e-commerce has also changed. With proliferating smartphones, e-commerce has become increasingly mobile. Euromonitor estimates that mobile commerce will amount to $972 billion by the end of this year. By 2021, mobile payments are expected to reach $3 trillion.
This is an area where American companies are falling behind. Continue reading