September 13 2005

eBay & Skype, a marriage made…well, somewhere

As I have said many, many times before, I adore Skype. Matter of fact, I would go so far as to say I am in love with it. Today though, I learned that others had eyes for my lover, but they were buying them. This was done by none other than eBay.

eBay came rolling in with a large bankroll and swept up “my girl”. You can read all the gory details in this press release. eBay is paying them $1.3 billion dollars in cash, and another $1.3 billion in stock options for a total of $2.6 billion upfront. Not mentioned in the release, but I found in this news story that eBay will pay another $1.5 billion if Skype reaches it’s projected sales goals.

Ok, here’s what I don’t get. Skype’s sales figures show they will do $60 million this year, and projections of $200 million for 2006. How in the world does a company doing that amount warrant a purchasing price so out of line with it’s projections? Is there some thing I am missing here? eBay does say they will use the Skype software to bring buyers and sellers closer together, and possibly charge sellers a fee for a successful contact. Still, doesn’t seem worth the value to me. If they had a crazy idea about charging for Skype-to-Skype calls, Google Talk and Yahoo Instant Messenger have pretty much killed that by also adding free VoIP to their systems.

This will be interesting to watch, because for now, I think eBay WAY over paid

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