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The 'Alibaba effect' goes global

Singles Day no longer limited to China, as tech and shopping trends change

Singles Day transactions exceeded 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) in the first three minutes of sales on Nov. 11. (Photo by Daisuke Harashima)

SHANGHAI -- China's Singles Day festival on Saturday generated a record 168.3 billion yuan ($25.3 billion) in sales on Alibaba's online platforms, up 39% from a year earlier, the e-commerce conglomerate said.

"More than $25 billion of [gross merchandise volume] in one day is not just a sales figure," Alibaba Group Holding CEO Daniel Zhang Yong said on Sunday, adding that the figure represents "the aspiration for quality consumption of the Chinese consumer, and it reflects how merchants and consumers alike have now fully embraced the integration of online and offline retail."

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