RealTime IT News

Tech Giants Join Forces to Challenge eBay

A host of powerful technology companies are pooling their resources to take on online auction leader eBay Inc.

The news was causing shares of eBay (EBAY) to tumble more than $7 in late-morning trading.

Reuters reported Friday that Microsoft Corp., Dell Computer Corp., Lycos Inc. and Excite@Home Corp. are part of the group of almost 100 sites that will unveil a plan Monday to create an auction network where goods may be shared across all of the member sites.

The new system is simple and makes it efficient for consumers to purchase goods. For example, a used computer listed on Lycos may also be listed on Dell (DELL) or Microsoft (MSFT) as well.

If nothing else, the forthcoming conglomeration is an indication of just how massive and powerful eBay has become.

FairMarket Inc., which sets up and runs auction sites for major companies, is the company behind the multi-merger.

Fairmarket will receive a flat fee each month for auction hosting and about a 1 percent cut from every sale on its network. The fee begins at about $10,000 per month.

The network is slated to launch Monday with about 70,000 initial listings.