Forget Black Friday, said a Telegraph report, as China's Singles Day, the world's biggest online shopping day of the year, kicked off at 0:00 local time (1600 GMT) on Friday.
More than one billion U.S. dollars was spent within the first five minutes and the number has soared to 9 billion as of 8:00 local time (2400 GMT), according to Chinese media reports.
Singles Day, which started as an "anti-Valentine's" celebration for single people in China back in the 1990s, was adopted by China's e-commerce giant Alibaba in 2009 and has since become the world's biggest online shopping day.
Last year, Chinese consumers bought 14 billion dollars of goods from Alibaba's Taobao and Tmall in just 24 hours, which resulted in 467 million parcels being delivered after 710 million payments were made, said Telegraph.
The sheer scale of the market combined with the acute Chinese appetite for British goods has opened a significant new sales venue, the Guardian said in a report.
Topshop, a British multinational fashion retailer of clothing, shoes,make-up and accessories, saw its sales surge by over 900 percent in 2015, it said.
"These results clearly indicate how impactful this online calendar moment has become, and as a key focus market for the brand we see 11.11 as a great way to raise brand awareness and conversion in China," a Topshop spokesperson was quoted as saying by the Guardian.
Fung Global expects sales of British brands to surge this year, driven by a tailwind from Chinese online shoppers' demands for overseas goods, said Telegraph.
The Hut Group, which owns beauty sites and Protein World, said it expects sales to double compared to 2015 with brands offering 40 percent off haircare products, it said.
Vitamin retailer Holland & Barrett is hoping to make 1.2 million dollars from the event alone this year, it added.
Waitrose, a chain of British supermarkets, partnered with Chinese marketing and logistics company and has started exporting to China in April, selling through the Royal Mail shop on Tmall, said the Guardian.
"Singles Day is a big occasion for consumers and businesses in China and has the potential to give the products we offer more exposure and provide another opportunity to test demand for our brand," Nigel Roberts, Waitcose B2B growth and development manager, was quoted as saying by the Guardian.
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