eBay sees $400 mln-plus in '05 China volume

Posted by: EndGame

eBay sees $400 mln-plus in '05 China volume - 07/12/05 04:29 PM

Online auctioneer eBay Inc. said on Monday it expects its China transaction volume to jump 30 percent or more in 2005, amid an aggressive expansion including a local launch of its PayPal online payment service.

"Based on our first quarter simple calculation of $100 million (in transaction volume), our full year should reach $400 million," eBay's China Chief Operating Officer James Zheng told Reuters at an event to announce the launch of the company's PayPal service in China.

But he added that if the volume increases from quarter to quarter, as it has in recent quarters, the actual transaction amount for the year should reach more than $400 million -- up sharply from about $300 million for 2004.

The strong growth is coming as eBay spends $100 million this year for a broader China expansion -- its biggest investment in a single country for the year.

The company had 11 million registered users on its China site at the end of the first quarter, up from 9.8 million at the end of last year, and is adding about one million users a quarter.

Its major competitors in the market include homegrown player Alibaba, and a joint venture between China's Sina Corp. and global Internet giant Yahoo Inc.

As part of its China expansion, eBay on Monday also officially launched its PayPal online payment system in China, forging a partnership with 15 Chinese banks, including China Merchants Bank and China Construction Bank

The PayPal service, called "Beibao," will initially allow account holders to pay for services from PayPal's China-based vendor partners, such as online game specialist NetEase.com Inc. and Tom Online

But it will be integrated with eBay's China site in September, becoming the first country-specific PayPal site in Asia, the company said.

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PayPal, which eBay purchased in 2002 for $1.5 billion, naturally complements eBay by giving online buyers and sellers an easy way to electronically pay for and receive payment for their online trading activity... Continued Here)

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