eBay Beats the Street

Auction giant eBay after the bell posted fourth quarter net income of $23.9
million, or 9 cents per share, beating Wall Street’s consensus estimate of 7
cents per share.


And the company predicted that after the
acquisition of Internet Auction
and with the strong momentum it is
carrying from the fourth quarter, 2001 revenues could approach $665 million,
with first quarter 2001 revenues approaching $150 million.

eBay stock took the up escalator in mid-afternoon trading in
anticipation of the earnings report and closed at $46.87, up $3.62 on the
day. At one point in the afternoon it went for $47.37. The 52-week high is
$127.50; the low, $26.75.

The company posted consolidated net revenues of $134 million for the fourth
quarter of 2000, an 81 percent increase over the $73.9 million reported for
the same period last year.

eBay’s consolidated net income, excluding the effects of certain non-cash
charges, was $25 million, or 9 cents per diluted share, compared with $5.1
million, or 2 cents per diluted share during the fourth quarter of 1999.

For the year 2000, eBay said it generated consolidated net revenues of $431.4
million, a 92 percent increase over net revenues of $224.7 million in fiscal
1999.

The company’s consolidated net income, excluding the effect of certain
non-cash charges and stock related expenses was $58.6 million, or 21 cents
per diluted share, compared with $18.3 million or seven cents per diluted
share during fiscal year 1999.

“Our fourth quarter results capped off a year of record success across all
metrics, including GMS, listings growth, user growth, revenues and profits,”
said eBay president and CEO Meg Whitman in a statement accompanying the
earnings report.

Among other highlights, the earnings statement said that eBay added a record
3.5 million registered users in the fourth quarter, bringing the number of
registered users to 22.5 million, an increase of 125 percent from 10 million
on Dec. 31, 1999.

eBay said its users transacted a record $1.6 billion in gross merchandise
sales in the quarter, a 79 percent increase over the fourth quarter of 1999.
And it hosted 79.4 million auctions during the fourth quarter, compared to
41.0 million during the same period last year.


The company said that the primary contributor to the quarter over quarter
increase in net revenues was increased online revenues, primarily from
strength in its core business, as well as growth in international operations.

Earlier this week, eBay raised listing fees about 7 percent while
implementing a 10-cent fee for its popular 10-day listing option. That
move was popular with analysts
, if not with eBay users.


eBay also announced the promotion of two senior executives. Gary Bengier,
eBay’s CFO, has been promoted to senior vice president for strategic planning
and development, overseeing long-term planning across all business units.
Rajiv Dutta, currently eBay’s vice president of finance, will assume the role
of CFO.

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