In China, Alibaba's main rival, online retailer JD.com, did not provide a sales figure only for Saturday but said cumulative sales over the 11-day period starting on November 1 through Saturday totalled 127 billion yuan ($19 billion US).
E-commerce company Alibaba saw a chance in 2009, and started pushing it as a shopping day - an online shopping day, of course.
Revenue rose 37.9 percent to 83.8 billion yuan ($12.6 billion) in the quarter, also beating analysts' projection of 83.6 billion yuan.
"168.2 billion yuan sales is not only a record in China, but also a record worldwide, " Alibaba's Chief Executive Daniel Zhang Yong said. "On Singles' Day, shopping is a sport, it's entertainment". It has emerged as the world's biggest shopping event and exceeds the combined sales for Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the U.S. It is a festival widespread among young mainland Chinese people to celebrate the fact they are proud of being single.
Alibaba's biggest rival, e-Commerce giant JD.com, saw sales reach $19.1 billion in the 11 days up to and including Singles Day, an increase of 50% from past year. This company has today made the announcement regarding the $19.1 billion generated from the shopping event sales.
EHS attributed the strong growth to the increasing popularity of the Singles' Day shopping event in Taiwan.
Last year, the sales number rose by almost a third at the eighth iteration of the event - though that was slower than the 60 percent increase logged in 2015.
"The work that's been done in the integration of offline and online, not just in terms of the technology integration, but the data and efficiencies for brands and the consumer through personalization has been enormous", Alibaba President Mike Evans said in an interview on Bloomberg TV. Mobile accounted for 90% of the volume. This year, more than 140,000 brands and merchants were on board.
China has 750 million internet users, and 95% of them used a mobile device to access the internet in 2016, according to China's state-owned news agency Xinhua. Ma's company spent billions buying into grocers, shopping malls and even department stores years before Amazon announced its $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods Market Inc. Alipay processed 1.48 billion total payment transactions, up 41% from 2016, and processed 256,000 transactions per second at peak.