EBay’s 2007 sales up, Whitman’s successor named

For the year ended Dec. 31, eBay Inc. reported net revenue totaled $7.672 billion, an increase of 29% compared to the previous year. Net income for the year totaled $348 million, or 25 cents per diluted share, which includes a goodwill impairment charge of $1.39 billion recorded in the third quarter of 2007. Net income was $1.126 billion in 2006, or 79 cents per diluted share.

For the fourth quarter period, the company’s net revenue totaled $2.181 billion, a 27% gain over the same period in the previous year. Net income totaled $531 million, or 39 cents per diluted share, compared to $346 million, or 25 cents per diluted share, in the same period in the previous year.

The company’s marketplaces unit, which consists of eBay, Shopping.com, StubHub, Kijiji and other e-commerce sites posted a 21% year-over-year increase in fourth quarter revenue for a total of $1.5 billion. Revenue growth was driven by StubHub, advertising, the fixed price format on eBay and, in part, by the benefit of a weaker US dollar. Approximately 54% of Marketplaces revenue came from markets outside of the US.

PayPal’s revenue totaled $563 million in the fourth quarter, an increase of 35% compared to the previous year. Skype’s revenue totaled $115 million, representing 76% year-over-year growth.

In other news, eBay announced that president/CEO Meg Whitman will step down on March 31. Whitman will remain on the company’s board of directors.

Whitman joined the company in 1998 and has helped build it from a US-only, auction-based trading site with 500,000 registered users to a multifaceted online business with millions of users worldwide.

John Donahoe, currently president of the Marketplaces division, has been elected by eBay’s board of directors to replace Whitman. In addition, Rajiv Dutta, currently president of PayPal, has been named EVP of eBay Inc. and will replace Donahoe as president of eBay Marketplaces. Scott Thompson, PayPal’s current CTO, will replace Dutta as president of PayPal. Bill Cobb, president of eBay North America, will retire from the company at the end of the year. Lorrie Norrington, currently president of eBay International, will become president of eBay Marketplaces Operations and assume Cobb’s responsibilities.

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