How do you feel about this topic?
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Revisiting Speculation about an eBay Acquisition
By: Ina Steiner
When eBay announced in 2014 that it was breaking up the company, analysts wondered if it would sell the marketplaces business - perhaps to Alibaba. It's an interesting time to revisit the topic now that the split with PayPal is complete (as of last July) and things have settled down.
I don't see the point for Alibaba considering to buy eBay when already we can buy direct from China right on ebay -- was looking for shower brushes and wouldn't you be surprised at how many I found for 99 cents each with 9.00 shipping !!! DIRECT from BEIJING !!!
Ebay caters to the huge behemoth junk sellers that have about destroyed the venue as a great platform for auctions by individuals and small businesses. If you subscribe to ECommercebytes newsletter, you've no doubt read complaints about auction sellers losing out to these mammoth companies .
LOL - Maybe Alibaba is thinking it's missing the boat and should be getting the $$$ income from its citizens who are selling on eBay/USA instead of them !!!
Anything is possible. And we thought John "The HO" Donahoe was bad ?
Just a couple of observations.
Well, I've been expecting that since back in the days of "No Touchy Jack Ma" (Google it) - though Jane makes some good points, and the way the market has been changing lately it might not happen.
As bad as The Ho was, he was a symptom, not the disease, and the real culprits who drove eBay into the ground were its Wall Street hedge-fund Corporate Masters. Once I saw that their financial adviser was Goldman Sachs, everything became clear. Those people are focused on short-term gains for their shareholders to the exclusion of building a long-term, sustainable business, and it doesn't work. Now I see that the new CEO is retrenching, trying to respond to the concerns that have been driving sellers away for the last almost-decade. He might capture a new market briefly, but the original core that made eBay what it was is gone and it won't be back. Let eBay's fate be a cautionary tale to other marketplaces that have recently made or are thinking of making IPOs.
EBay - and probably Etsy, eventually - are victims of their own success. Continued growth has a price: eventually you need more resources (capital and cash flow) than you can sustain on your own, and you have to look for some kind of support. Either that or somebody will come along and buy you out. If you're lucky, you can sell to or partner with someone who shares your vision. I'm seeing this happening right now in the Michigan craft beer scene; not only are the "big boys" buying up craft breweries in order to boost their cred in the growing new market, but some small breweries are forming partnerships in order to defend their independence. If you're not lucky... well, this past year I saw an excellent family-owned independent grocery store sell out to Kroger because the owner was aging and none of the heirs wanted to take it over, and they couldn't find another buyer.
The trouble with eBay now is that it's too big to be nimble. It's become a dinosaur - really too big to sustain itself. The code that underlies its systems has become so complex that it's almost impossible to change even small things without breaking. In addition, they're wedded to a business model that calls for them to be a walled garden, in a world where "wall-breaking" technologies such as buyable social media posts and flexible payment gateways are proving to be game-changers.
I don't see it going away... but I see it being relegated to the has-been territory occupied by Yahoo and MySpace. But then that's what usually happens to the Next Big Thing... sooner or later something newer comes along and builds on their innovation, and they become the Last Old Thing instead.