Friday 28 October 2016 12:38 pm

Alibaba wants a chief cuteness officer (no dogs allowed)

Forget the days of shelling out money to get Kim Kardashian to promote your products.

Alibaba has come up with the idea of recruiting for a "chief maimeng officer" (that translates as "selling its cuteness") to help sell its products and promote its bumper sale on Singles' Day next month.

The Chinese e-commerce giant is hoping the successful feline will help the company win over more customers. And the cute cat will make what will surely be a highly-anticipated appearance at a gala on 10 November, taking place on the evening before the huge sale.

Read more: It's official: Cat videos are good for your health

It's not restricted to certain breeds, or indeed nationalities. But, unfortunately for any particularly adorable dogs out there, only cats need apply.

It's expected that the winning cat will be the face that launched a thousand ships, or in this case viral memes and videos. No pressure, potential cat-idates.

Apparently, some pretty famous cats are already in the running. American star Grumpy Cat, who has already spawned meme after meme, Milk and Oreo from the UK and Maru from Japan are all noble contenders.

The treasure that is Grumpy Cat is in the running
The treasure that is Grumpy Cat is in the running (Source: Getty)

Alibaba's also piloting "Buy+", which it says is the world's first complete virtual reality shopping experience during the festival. Shoppers will be virtually transported to select retail stores across the globe where they'll have the chance to come across some of these cats through VR. Petting them results in being given a red envelope containing discount coupons. Yes, really.

Well, Alibaba did have to pull something out the bag. Singles' Day is the world's biggest sales event of the year, after all. Last year, it helped Chinese retailers rake in £9.4bn in just over 24 hours. This year, Alibaba wants to break that record.

And what better way of setting yourself up for success than recruiting a photogenic cat?

Here are some possible candidates…