EBay Payment Service Adds to Profits Rise

20 October 2006

SAN JOSE, California: Online auction house eBay's third quarter figures have beaten analysts' expectations, but the company's PayPal division performed even better than the core activities.

The company posted sales of $1.44 billion (€1.14bn; £770m) - compared with analysts' $1.42bn forecast - and a 10% rise in profits to $367 million,.

Although ceo Meg Whitman pronounced it a "very good quarter for the company and a continuation of the strong earnings growth we delivered throughout the first half", she went on to tell analysts: "The key focus remains reinvigorating our core US business."

Cfo Bob Swan said auction listings were weak in July, but pricing changes in August to encourage sellers to use auctions more often, led to an improvement in September.

EBay's lucrative PayPal service - a standard platform for online payments, on or off the auction site - had $350m in quarterly revenue, up 41% from a year ago. It claimed 123 million users at the end of the quarter.

Data sourced from Financial Times online; additional content by WARC staff