Alibaba’s annual “Singles Day” shopping celebration has shifted its tone this year, as the retail giant pushes sustainability over the usual mammoth sales after calls from Beijing for “common prosperity,” reports Reuters. In 2020, Alibaba expanded what it named the world’s biggest online shopping festival from a one-day November 11 event into a 11-day bonanza, with celebrity performances and a sales metric ticking over live on a scoreboard that ended with the news that it had racked up $74 billion in orders.
This time around, the event comes at a time of much more stringent regulatory scrutiny for China’s biggest companies—including Alibaba—and the call to promote “common prosperity” and curb excess echoing around boardrooms. In 2021, Alibaba is formally promoting “sustainable development” and “inclusiveness.”
While livestreaming stars and deep discounts will still play a big role in this year’s festivities, the company said its priorities this year were encouraging “eco-friendly consumption” and “supporting vulnerable populations.”