Chinese singles' day blows away Thanksgiving weekend

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However, the 27% sales growth from 2017 to 2018 was the lowest since the event began in 2009, leading Alibaba, with its main e-commerce platforms Taobao and Tmall, to search for new ways to stimulate consumers' purchasing desires this time round.

Alibaba's Singles' Day celebrations have featured US singer Mariah Carey and musician Pharrell Williams in the past.

Its data center was in 24-hour operation at high loads during last year's Double 11, with real-time data processing at its peak of more than 1.7 billion calculations per second.

The retail data tracking service estimates that the long US holiday shopping weekend this year will generate total retail sales of $29 billion - that would be less than the $30 billion produced in 2018 by the 24-hour unofficial Chinese shopping holiday known as Singles Day.

Monday 11 November kicks off the busiest period of the year for parcel delivery business NZ Post - beginning with the online shopping frenzy known as Singles' Day. It is now considered a significant event in the global retail calendar.

Last year, total Cyber Monday e-commerce sales in the United States amounted to $6 billion with Thanksgiving and Black Friday adding another $8.2 billion for a weekend total of $14.2 billion.

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Alex Chow, a 22-year-old computer science undergraduate, was certified dead at 8.09am on Friday, Queen Elizabeth Hospital said. Police in a statement on November 8 denied those allegations and announced it would launch an investigation into Chow's death.

Alibaba anticipates 500 million shoppers will take part in the 11.11 event this year, up from about 100 million recorded last year.

But despite the shopping festival's commercial success for local retailers, 73 per cent of New Zealanders have not heard of Singles' Day, according to price and product comparison site PriceSpy.

Singles Day is a bit like Alibaba's version of Amazon's Prime Day.

Last year, four out of the top five Australian brands purchased during the event were health and supplement brands, with Swisse number one, and Devondale, Bio-Island, Blackmores, and Healthy Care following.

A new record is expected again this year, despite a slowing economy partly due to the US-China trade war. Major brands like Apple and Estee Lauder are some of the big global brands that will be participating in this year's Singles Day.