Last year, eBay announced that it would quit the Chinese market, as its auction service had failed to gain traction in the country. But since eBay didn't want to give up on such a large market entirely, it announced that it would partner with local firm Tom Online and another auction service at some point in the future. Now the company says it's close to bringing its partnership to fruition, although the relaunch has been slower than originally planned. Other than the fact that it's partnering with a well-known local company, it's not clear that anything will be different about the service. That being said, if it does take off, it would seem that most of the value is probably coming from Tom and not eBay, since that's the main difference. Seeing as the major US internet firms have had a tough time cracking the Chinese market, such partnerships have been and will continue to be popular. But if the local companies feel that they're bringing most of the value, they may begin to wonder why they're bothering to ally with US companies.
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