• AliExpress touts ‘Global Shopping Festival’ initiative

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    Overseas local merchants are being invited to participate in the 11.11 Global Shopping Festival by China-based retail online marketplace, AliExpress.

    Merchants from Italy, Spain, Turkey and Russia are being asked to take part in the event, with AliExpress hoping its commitment will enable SMEs from around the world to come together for the  event.

    “AliExpress is dedicated to becoming a lifestyle platform for consumers and for merchants worldwide,” said Wang Mingqiang, general manager of AliExpress. “The introduction of overseas local SME merchants that registered on AliExpress to Alibaba Group’s flagship 11.11 Global Shopping Festival is just the beginning of our commitment to bring more local SMEs to the platform and help them grow and succeed in international markets.”

    In China, 11.11 is known as “Singles’ Day” because the date resembles four “sticks,” a term commonly used to refer to bachelors and bachelorettes. In the early 1990s, a group of Chinese college students popularised November 11thas a celebration aimed at fighting negative attitudes toward of being single.

    Alibaba says Chairman and CEO Daniel Zhang chose to use this little known holiday to market Alibaba’s new business unit at the time Tmall, encouraging single people to treat themselves and buy something on this day.

    The event, now in it’s 11th year, has evolved into a nation-wide shopping event, surpassing the combined sales of Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the U.S. to become the largest 24-hour sales event in the world.

    This year’s 11.11 will focus on “new consumption,” “new business” and building a greener society. There will be pop-up promotions, as well as other online and offline activities in 35 cities in 15 countries and regions.

    “11.11 is not just a festival for consumers in China,” said Jiang Fan, president of Alibaba’s Tmall and Taobao platforms. “It is a celebration for customers around the world who are part of our Alibaba digital economy.”

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