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eBay about to put part of self on eBay

Enterprise services unit on the chopping block

eBay is about to sell off its enterprise services unit, according to folks whispering in the ear of The Wall Street Journal.

The journal names private-equity outfit Permira as the buyer and suggests the company's pen is poised over a cheque with US$900m written in the “amount” field.

Ebay Enterprise, as the division is known, provides all manner of transaction-handling and digital marketing services. The division also houses the Magento e-commerce platform, logistics services and even design services.

The tat bazaar has slimed down substantially of late, shedding PayPal and ditching a stake in CraigsList as it seeks to focus on its core competency of retailing. That business is also in flux, as eBay now tries to position itself as a source of keenly-priced premium products, in contrast to the diver fare offered on its classified advertising subsidiary Gumtree.

Focusing on its core competency seems entirely sensible, given eBay faces increasing competition from the likes of Alibaba and its diverse offerings. ®

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