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eBay (Symbol: EBAY) is an internet-based auction and eCommerce business which offers an online platform for people and businesses alike to offer goods in an auction-like fashion to visitors of the site to purchase, and more recently a service called "Buy it now" which sellers may opt to use in tandem or lieu of the auction format, although earlier in March, eBay was involved in a dispute over the buy it now service with MercExchange, resulting in the court case being closed with the requirement that eBay pay $35Mln to MercExchange for the infringement.
eBay gains its revenue from commissions taken from sellers on the site, and also through a number of other branched companies that it operates such as Paypal, as a stock, eBay recently saw a huge jump to $34 after eBay announced a partnership with Yahoo! however, recently its price has since declined to $25 fairly rapidly, although reasons for the selloff are not clear.
eBay operates a number of branching companies such as:
- Paypal - an online payment site that is tightly integrated into the eBay service that allows customers to securely exchange money with eachother after agreeing to purchase goods, and this service brings additional commissions for the usage of the service.
- Shopping.com - a product sales site very much similar in essence to service Amazon.
- Rent.com - a service for people looking to rent homes and apartments in various localities.
- kijiji - classified ads, similar to the Californian site craigslist, available in 20+ countries.
More recently, eBay acquired Skype, an internet telephony service for a $2.6bn deal, and subsequently has been expanding massively, contributing to the dilution of its stock price, although long-term investors believe that these acquisitions will result in increased revenues in the long term.
eBay has a relatively low P/E of 20.14 and forward PEG of 1.01 showing that eBay could well be significantly underpriced at its current levels, and not reflective of the monetization potential eBay is developing for itself.
similarly, earnings estimates for the company in the past year have either been no surprise, or surprised to the upside, with analysts expecting the company to report $0.24 earnings although some anticipate slower sales in retail to be reflected for eBay as a result of the current economic changes in interest rates as a result of aims to curb inflation.