China’s Alibaba just delivered yet another triumphant Singles Day shopping fest with a new record RMB 268.4 billion (USD 38.4 billion) in sales, up 26% from last year’s 30.8 billion dollars and an 11 years high, amidst a slowing domestic economy and gloomy trade war.
Underpinning the new record haul is a full set of technologies ranging from blockchain, fintech to cloud infrastructure provided by its financial arm Ant Financial and cloud computing subsidiary Alibaba cloud.
This is the first time Ant Financial fully applies blockchain technology into Alibaba’s ritual annual shopping gala, the largest of its kind in the planet, to ensure products credibility and to provide financial support for the hundreds of thousands of SMEs participating in the extravaganza and the expected 5 billion users who are ready to splurge during the 24-hour shopping gala, according to local media outlet Guangming Daily.
Counterfeits have always been an issue plaguing the Hangzhou-based e-commerce heavyweight, the application of blockchain to enable traceability and credibility of the goods across its Taobao marketplace and Tmall helps ensure a customer’s confidence before they are hitting the order button.
Additionally, blockchain has been applied to more than 400 million imported products sold on Tmall, 2.7 times the number from last year’s trial. Each product was stamped with its own unique blockchain ID. Customers can access the detailed information of the product including production, processing, and transportation by scanning the code on the package.
KrASIA reported earlier Ant Financial has been working together with global agricultural company Bayer Crop Science to develop blockchain-based solutions that would be used to improve food safety and agricultural supply chains efficiency.
Alibaba came out on top of the world in published patents pertaining to blockchain technology with 322 patents during the first half of 2019, reported by Techweb citing data from IP-centric media IPRDaily.
First adopted in 2016, Alibaba’s blockchain technology has been currently applied to more than 40 scenarios, including international money transfer, product traceback, charity, and medical care.