It's Official: eBay Has Too Much Money (Some Of Which Is Now Skype's)

from the defend-that-valuation dept

This evening the rumors increased, and as of a few minutes ago, it's now official that eBay is vastly overpaying for Skype. It's a great deal for Skype, and a ridiculous one for eBay. They're paying $1.3 billion in cash, $1.3 billion in stock and apparently there's another $1.5 billion on the line in incentive payouts based on various performance metrics over the next three years. I understand that Skype has a great product (I use it all the time) and I understand that they've built up a nice community. However, the community wasn't that large and very few of the users were paying (and even those who were paying weren't paying very much). In the meantime, Yahoo, Google and Microsoft are all getting into the same market with much bigger war chests and much bigger user-bases. Are there ways that eBay can integrate Skype into their current offering? Yes, somewhat. However, the buzz going around that this will let buyers and sellers talk to each other is ridiculous. I've bought and sold plenty of stuff on eBay, and not once have I ever wanted to speak to the person I was dealing with. The talk about synergies with Paypal seem even more tenuous. There seems to be very little in the way of real synergies between the two companies at all. About the only thing this suggests is that eBay is worried that it's existing business is in trouble and it needs help fast -- and apparently the best way to do that is to significantly overpay for a VoIP offering with too much hype.

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  1. identicon
    undefined, 12 Sep 2005 @ 2:27pm

    Re: Its pretty stupid...

    I just dumped all my shares in ebay.. Q3 and Q4 are going to be a rough ride considering they already announced that they will miss their projected numbers. I'll rebuy in 2004Q2 when the stock may show signs of picking up. 4.6 billion is really a large sum for something I can do with yahoo IM or google gizmo for free.

    I do feel sorry for ebay sellers that offer this, being innundated with endless calls about innane features of their sale item. (At 2am: "is that a 1984 Hulk statue with B1 yellow teeth or the rare A2 white teeth?")

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