Cainiao charters 51 air freighters for Singles Day

Ahead of the coming Chinese shopping festival Singles Day, Alibaba owned Cainiao has chartered 51 air freighters and upgraded its technology to meet demand.

The charter flights will take goods to Western Europe, Russia and Southeast Asia for Ali Express and Tmail World customers.

In addition, to meet growing customer demand and ever growing Singles Days, Cainiao VP Ben Wang said that the company needs to keep developing its systems to anticipate growth and driving greater efficiencies into its network.

“It was only five years ago that parcel orders surpassed 100m for the first time. Back then it took nine days to deliver the first 100m parcels,” he said. “Last year, it took less than three days (2.8 days) to deliver the same number of parcels.

“Consumers increasingly want faster, better delivery, so that’s what we’re doing. This year, we’re striving to achieve a new high, leveraging the beauty of scale and technology.”

In 2017 Singles Day far outshone the West’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday with sales of $25.3bn as against the Black Friday events that had combined sales of $14.48bn. As more Chinese people go online so this is set to grow considerably.

While Black Friday has been around for a while (it is associated with Thanksgiving), Singles Day has only been around since 2011 when the November 11 event had a date involving just ones – 11/11/11. The day is ‘celebrated’ with people buying themselves gifts and major retailers discounting heavily.