eBay Acquires German Online Shopping Club

Published by: Dave Simmons on 20th Dec 2010 | View all blogs by Dave Simmons
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eBay Acquires German Online Shopping Club

eBay Inc. announced Monday it was acquiring brands4friends, an online shopping club based in Germany, for $200 million in cash.  The acquisition is the world's largest online auction site's second in a week.

Based in Berlin, brands4friends currently has about 3.5 million active users in the German market.  The company also maintains operations in Austria, Japan, and the UK.  The UK operation, which is actually an equity stake in the UK shopping club SecretSales.com, and the equity stake in the Japanese unit are both included in the eBay deal.

Insiders say the acquisition is quite significant for eBay, as it comes at a time when the auction site is pushing to rejuvenate its existing online auction business.  The company reported in October that third-quarter revenue rose 1 percent to $2.25 billion from the year before, but the majority of that growth was in its PayPal online payments business.

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