Next up on the Web 2 Summit interview docket is John Donahoe, President and CEO of eBay. This marks a return of sorts for eBay to the Summit stage, it’s been four years since former CEO Meg Whitman joined us. Much has changed – eBay faces significant competition in its PayPal business, and unwound its Skype acquisition, for example. It also purchased GSI Commerce, a company that might best be called a “white label Amazon.” But eBay is also a company on a mission, with its new X.commerce payment platform, a renewed focus on mobile commerce, and the addition of a Facebook executive to its Board of Directors.
Given this is Donahoe’s first Web 2 Summit interview, I’d love your input. What do you want to hear from him, and about his company?
As an extra incentive, I’ll be picking the best three questions from these series of posts (including Pincus, Marc Benioff, Paul Otellini, Dick Costolo, Michael Dell, Dennis Crowley, Mary Meeker, Michael Roth, Steve Ballmer, James Gleick, Vic Gundotra, and Reid Hoffman, among others.) The authors of those questions will get complimentary passes to Web 2 – a more than $4000 value. So get to commenting, and thank you!
Previously: Mark Pincus. Next up: Marc Benioff.
11 thoughts on “Help Me Interview John Donahoe, CEO, eBay (And Win Free Tix to Web 2)”
Do you, Mr. Donahue, view your investment in Skype as a failure, if so, what do you wish you had done differently? What you hoped to achieve? Do you think Microsoft will succeed with Skype?
I’d like to know how Free listing fees have an impact on User activity. Do you see an increase in listings? Do you ultimately gain more because sellers list more?
When you like at the innovation in the two main online marketplaces: eBay and Amazon in recent years, Amazon has created the Kindle, offered online movie streaming, cloud hosting, and much more. eBay, on the other hand, besides some acquisitions seem to be … doing what they have always done. What are the areas of innovation you see happening at eBay?
What are you doing to challenge the authority of credit card companies with regard to chargebacks?
I ask for this reason: I sold a laptop on eBay. After 3 months, the user who purchased it, filed a chargeback on his credit card for the purchase. It was an extremely time consuming process to try and figure out what exactly was going on.
Eventually, the user sent the laptop back – half mangled. The point is, the chargeback was placed outside the time limit of both eBay and Paypal’s “complaint timeframe.” Also, it was sold “as is” with no returns. I was told the credit card companies have higher legal authority than Pay”Pal”. I haven’t sold anything on eBay since (a year and a half).
You have to agree to eBay’s/PreyPal’s terms; PreyPal has to agree to the credit card company’s terms; and I know which one I would prefer to trust …
Was the “noise” from “disruptive innovation” the reason for the failed “three year turnaround”?
Ok, fine I’ll be the one to ask the obvious.
I am curious as to the isolation of ebay from the Social eco-system. How long (if at all) before we see some integration with social networks since that is where everyone seems to be right now and being able to post things on Facebook (and not just a link to Ebay listing) could really go places.
eBay has been boasting about ‘growth’ in sales over mobile devices, as well as growth in overall GMV.
Two questions for Mr Donahoe.
1) How much of the ‘growth’ in mobile sales has been at the expense of traditional shopping via the internet. In other words, does this ‘growth’ represent an actual increase in sales, or have sales declined with non mobile transactions?
2) In April and in July, eBay started imposing final value fees on shipping in a further attempt to manipulate sellers into offering merchandise with “free shipping”. Since free shipping amounts to little more than sellers including the cost of shipping into the selling price, how does eBay reconcile the higher selling prices when discussing growth? Now that so many more sellers are offering “free shipping” the increased selling prices do not reflect actual sales growth as eBay claims, but simply a shift in accounting practices where shipping is now counted as part of the selling price.
Why isn’t the social graph layered into listings on eBay?
So as a buyer or seller, I see the friends in common on each listing / transaction.
The signal of mutual friends could be a major influencer for close tie transactions. Right now, it’s implicit.
How has Craigslist.com impacted eBay’s business?
eBay clearly is following Amazon’s lead by focusing on fixed price listings and catalog listing. With eBay’s recent purchase of ecommerce giant GSI, can we expect ebay to also go into the fulfillment business? FBA (fulfillment by Amazon) generates substantial revenue for Amazon and they are constantly expanding the program.