UPS, AuctionDrop Sign Pact

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AuctionDrop Inc., San Carlos, CA, an eBay drop-off store, said last week that its customers now can drop their items at any of United Parcel Service's 3,400 U.S. stores.


Terms of the deal were not disclosed.


EBay drop-off stores are similar to traditional consignment shops in that they charge sellers a commission for selling an item. They don't charge upfront fees for their basic service, instead earning commissions based on an item's final sale price. Customers usually pay separate fees charged by eBay, ranging from 1.5 percent to 5.25 percent of the final price.


Under the deal, UPS will pack and ship approved items to AuctionDrop at no cost to the seller. AuctionDrop then auctions the goods on eBay and sends the seller a check minus the commission and eBay fees.


AuctionDrop has opened five San Francisco Bay area stores since March 2003. Other eBay drop-off companies include iSold It, QuikDrop, AuctionWagon and NuMarkets.


AuctionDrop said the deal will expand its operations, which have been limited to its five Northern California stores. Each of AuctionDrop's five stores takes in 15-30 items daily and has annual revenue of $350,000 to $400,000.


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