On China’s Singles’ Day, akin to the U.S.’s Cyber Monday, Alibaba made of $9.3 billion in sales in 278 million orders. Not only is that an astronomical number for a single company in a 24 hour time period, but it also means that potentially one quarter of China’s population made a purchase from Alibaba that day. Even more astounding is the fact that 43% of those orders were made on mobile devices.
As the Executive Vice Chairman of the Alibaba Group stated, “You’re seeing the unleashing of the consumption power of the Chinese consumer.” And we really are seeing that consumer power combined with the power of the internet and mobile devices to give consumer access to goods and markets. Real Chinese incomes are rising and with that rise comes a rise in disposable income. As consumption increases, so does the Gross Domestic Product of the country, incentive for producers to expand, and incentives for investors to send funds to Chinese firms producing and supplying consumer goods. China will soon be not only the world’s biggest economy, but also the world’s biggest consumer. With that fact will come the desire for imported goods, raising exports from other nations that trade with China. Thus, Chinese growth is not always bad for other nations (such as the U.S.), but can just mean a re-balancing of relative positions.