Spending
'Singles Day’ shoppers spend $2 billion in first hour on Alibaba

Alibaba said within the first hour and 12 seconds, more than $2 billion of deals were settled on both its domestic and international retail marketplaces

 

Alibaba said a record $2 billion of goods were sold in the first hour of its Singles Day shopping bonanza in China Tuesday, maintaining the day’s dominance as the world’s biggest retail event as it went global for the first time.

 

The e-commerce giant said that amount was more than a third of the $5.8 billion full-day sales recorded on the same day last year and analysts say this year will blow that out of the water.

 

Alibaba has been pushing 11th November as Singles Day — so named for the number of ones in the date — since 2009 as it looks to tap an expanding army of Internet shoppers in China, which has the world’s biggest online population.

 

Singles Day already surpassed major shopping festivals in the US in terms of transaction value last year, toppling the combined online sales of $3.7 billion recorded on Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, according to an estimate by Internet analytics firm comScore.

 

The day was originally marketed as an “anti-Valentine’s Day” in China featuring hefty discounts to lure the country’s singletons and price-sensitive buyers.

 

It has been expanded globally this year to include overseas merchants and customers.

 

Within the first hour and 12 seconds, more than $2 billion of deals were settled on both domestic and international retail marketplaces, Alibaba said in a statement, adding that 45.7% of the transactions were made via mobile devices.

 

Headquartered in the eastern city of Hangzhou, Alibaba debuted its shares in New York two months ago with a record-breaking $25 billion initial public offering.

 

The giant operates China’s most popular online shopping platform, Taobao, which is estimated to hold more than 90% of the online market for consumer-to-consumer transactions.

 

The company does not sell products directly but acts as an electronic middleman. It also owns other marketplaces, including business-to-consumer platform Tmall.

 

More than 27,000 brands and merchants are participating in this year’s Singles Day, while consumers in more than 220 countries and regions will be able to join the 24-hour spending spree, the statement said.

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SAT clubs petitions of KP Singh, others with DLF case

Admitting petitions of DLF directors, the SAT directed SEBI to submit responses to this new bunch of petitions on 6th December and directed the petitioners to file their rejoinders

 

The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) has bundled petitions of DLF promoter-chairman KP Singh and four others with the main petition that the realty major has filed with the quasi-judicial body on 22nd October and put off the hearing on the matter to 10th December.

 

DLF Chairman Singh, his son and Vice-Chairman, Rajiv Singh, younger daughter and whole-time director at DLF, Pia Singh, company directors TC Goyal and Ramesh Sanka, had earlier moved the tribunal challenging the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI)'s 10th October ban on them.

 

The market regulator had banned DLF and six of its senior officials, including the chairman, from accessing the capital markets for three years for alleged non-disclosure of three of its hundreds of subsidiaries in the 2007 IPO filing.

 

Admitting their petitions, the quasi-judicial body SAT directed SEBI to submit responses to this new bunch of petitions on 6th December and directed the petitioners to file their rejoinders on the 8th, and fixed 10th December for hearing on their petitions along with the main case.

 

On 5th November, the tribunal had allowed DLF to redeem Rs1,806 crore from its mutual fund investments to meets its working capital requirements and to service its debt, till 31st December.

 

DLF had sought permission to redeem money locked in MFs after being slapped with the three-year ban by SEBI.

 

The final hearing in DLF’s main appeal against the order would commence on 10th December, prior to which SEBI and the company will have to file their replies with the SAT.

 

As an interim measure, SAT has allowed the company to redeem mutual funds worth Rs767 crore in November and further funds worth Rs1,039 crore in December.

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Data tariffs may fall 20% after Reliance Jio’s entry says Fitch

According to the ratings agency, entry of Reliance Jio will intensify competition in the data segment, and may cause data tariffs to decline by at least 20%

 

Ratings agency Fitch on Tuesday said, the entry of Reliance Jio Infocomm in the Indian telecom space will intensify competition and may bring data tariffs down by at least 20%.

It, however, said no tariff wars are expected as witnessed during the 2009-2013 period.

“The likely entry of new telco Reliance Jio, which is a part of Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), will intensify competition in the data segment, and may cause data tariffs to decline by at least 20%,” Fitch said in its 2015 outlook for Indian telecommunications services.

Reliance Industries had announced that it would launch commercial 4G telecom service of RJio in 2015 entailing an investment of Rs70,000 crore.

Fitch said Jio will focus largely on data and may have a limited impact on the incumbents’ core voice business, given a weak “voice-over-LTE” technology ecosystem and lack of affordable 4G-compatible handsets in India.

“We do not foresee a re-run of the tariff wars of 2009-2013, which led to a severe decline in industry tariffs,” Fitch said.

Fitch expects the top four Indian telcos — Bharti Airtel Ltd, Vodafone India, Idea Cellular and Reliance Communications — to increase their revenue market share to around 83% by 2015 from the current 79% in the $30-billion industry.

“Industry revenue will grow by at a mid-single-digit rate in 2015, driven by data services. The top four telcos’ 2015 average operating EBITDA margin will be mostly unchanged at 32%-33% (2014: 32%) as a decline in data tariffs will offset a gradual rise in voice tariffs,” it said.

Fitch said the top four telcos will generate a minimal free cash flow margin due to higher capex and flat EBITDA; the 2015 industry capex/revenue ratio could rise as fast-growing data traffic requires supporting investment.

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