"Singles Day" may sound lonely, but those taking part this November 11 can find some togetherness in what amounts to the world's largest annual shopping spree.
In terms of money spent, China's one-day festival of consumption is likely to eclipse Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday – combined, according to Adobe Analytics. The retail data tracking service estimates that the long U.S. holiday shopping weekend this year will generate total retail sales of $ 29 billion ̵
What's morphed into an astounding revenue-generating Enterprise started out among Chinese university students holding parties to celebrate being single in 1993, only to be co-opted by China-based retailing giant Alibaba 16 years later.
Alibaba, China's version of Amazon, markets down merchandise in a marketing campaign that had other e-commerce companies soon doing the same. A decade later, the event now gives Amazon Prime Day a run for its money.
This year, more than 200,000 brands are participating, Alibaba said. The company is hyping the event with a "Countdown Gala" featuring a performance by pop singer Taylor Swift.
American companies are also getting in on the act. Nearly a quarter of U.S. Retailers plan to run singles day promotions, according to Adobe, which surveyed more than 400 U.S. retailers with annual sales in excess of $ 500,000.
That said, U.S.-China trade tensions could ding American brands taking part this year, concludes another study by global consultancy AlixPartners.
Chinese consumers will spend 54% more this year than in 2018, but 78% said they would think twice about buying U.S. products due to loyalty to their country, AlixPartners found in a recent survey of more than 2,000 Chinese consumers.