Ebay revenues rise 15% to €2.6bn

Ebay, the world’s largest online marketplace, last night forecast fourth-quarter revenue that may miss some analysts’ estimates as sales growth slows heading into the holiday season.

Third-quarter revenue climbed 15% to $3.4bn (€2.6bn), the company said, in line with the $3.41bn average analyst estimate compiled by Bloomberg. Profit excluding some items was 55 cents a share, also matching analysts’ prediction.

Revenue in the current quarter will be $3.85bn to $4bn, Ebay said, compared with an average analyst projection of $3.94bn. The company forecast profit excluding some items of 66c to 69c a share, versus a 68c estimate.

Chief executive John Donahoe has been spending money on mobile technology, marketing campaigns and website upgrades, seeking to thrust the company, once known for its online auctions, beyond its roots. Ebay’s comparable sales rose 21% in September from a year earlier, less than August’s 24% growth, ChannelAdvisor said earlier this month, a potential sign of a slower start to the holiday sales season.

“Ebay has stopped the bleeding with respect to the marketplace, but continues to loose market share to Amazon and other large online retailers,” Brian Walker, an analyst at Forrester Research, said.

PayPal, which made up 43% of Ebay’s revenue last year, has also driven growth. Revenue rose 23% to $1.37bn in the period, and total payment volume climbed 20% to $35.2bn. The unit had 117.4m users in the third quarter, a 14% rise from a year earlier.

Net income in the third quarter rose to $597m, or 45c a share, from $491m, or 37c, a year earlier, the company said.

Earlier this year, Paypal announced the creation of 1,000 jobs in Dundalk. PayPal already employs 1,500 people at its European headquarters in Blanchardstown, Dublin.

Ebay fell to $45.80 after closing at $48.20 in New York. The shares are up 59% this year.


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