Alibaba set a sales record on Singles Day, the world’s largest 24-hour shopping event.
Gross merchandise value, calculating sales across Alibaba’s shopping platforms, exceeded last year’s 213.5 billion yuan record (nearly $30.5 billion) on Monday afternoon local time and kept rising through the rest of the day.
At the end of the event, GMV stood at 268.4 billion yuan ($38.3 billion), just under a 26 percent rise from the figure posted last year. That’s a slower growth rate than the 27% seen on last year’s Singles Day.
It was the 11th edition of the annual Singles Day event — also called the Double 11 shopping festival because it falls on Nov. 11. During the 24-hour period, which began at midnight in Singapore and Hong Kong, Alibaba offered huge discounts across its e-commerce sites such as Tmall.
Analysts had warned of weaker growth this year given China’s slowing economy and the trade war with the United States.
China’s yearly 24-hour 11/11 Global Shopping Festival is now bigger than Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the weekend in between combined. Adobe Analytics predicts this year’s five-day Thanksgiving weekend will drive about $29 billion in retail sales, both online and in-store.