“PayPal Wars” Author: Watch Out for eBay vs. Google Clash
Los Angeles, CA (April 19, 2007) – A strong earnings report from eBay may have surprised Wall Street analysts, but the author of an award-winning book about PayPal cautions that the auction company still faces an uphill battle with search giant Google.
Eric M. Jackson—PayPal’s former head of marketing and author of “The PayPal Wars: Battles with eBay, the Media, the Mafia, and the Rest of Planet Earth” (World Ahead Publishing, paperback, $15.95, ISBN 0977898431) —cites PayPal’s brisk 31 percent revenue growth as a major reason why eBay beat Wall Street’s estimates. But Jackson adds that this doesn’t mean that the auction company is out of the woods when it comes to the vigorous challenge it faces from Google’s popular Adwords service.
“With 143 million users, the sky’s the limit for PayPal,” notes Jackson. “Yet, while PayPal’s amazing growth is fortunate for eBay, their core auction business is not doing well. You can blame Google for this. Just as I predicted in my book, eBay is still in trouble; Google Adwords is decentralizing e-commerce across the Web and siphoning sales away from eBay’s auction websites in the process.”
PayPal was acquired by eBay in late-2002 after it had become the most popular payment option for a majority of its sellers. Besides offering secure auction payments, PayPal also facilitates payments on Web sites other than eBay. These non-auction payments accounted for $4.4 billion in PayPal transactions in the first quarter, a 51 percent increase over last year. News services Reuters quoted eBay CEO Meg Whitman as crediting Google’s own payment system, Google Checkout, as a positive factor helping to accelerate PayPal’s non-auction growth. “Amazingly enough, we had 51 percent growth,” said Whitman. “The interest in this category is helping [PayPal].”
“I fear that Whitman is not seeing the forest for the trees,” counters Jackson, who served as PayPal’s interim vice president of marketing after it was acquired by eBay. “Media coverage of Google Checkout isn’t a major reason for PayPal’s growth in non-auction transactions—it’s the success of Google Adwords. This service is helping PayPal even as it’s chipping away at eBay’s marketplace by making it easier for sellers to market goods on their own Web sites. But at least eBay’s shareholders can rely on PayPal to cushion the blow.”
While “The PayPal Wars” has received critical acclaim, eBay’s management has not embraced the behind-the-scenes account of PayPal’s traumatic creation. In fact, Jackson notes that eBay’s management idly stood by as most of PayPal’s original team left the company. PayPal alumni went on to start many other online and media companies, including YouTube, Room 9 Entertainment, LinkedIn, Geni, and World Ahead Media.
Winner of the Writers Notes Book Award, “The PayPal Wars” is one of most highly proclaimed business books of recent years. The Washington Times hailed it as “an absorbing insider’s story,” Reason Magazine said it “reads like a spy novel,” and legendary business guru Tom Peters proclaimed it “kept me up all night reading…it gives the best description of business strategy unfolding in a world changing at warp speed.”
ABOUT WORLD AHEAD:
Headquartered in Los Angeles, World Ahead Media is the West Coast’s leading publisher of conservative and free market books. Founded by PayPal alumni Eric M. Jackson and Norman Book, World Ahead is the exclusive publisher of WND Books, the imprint of WorldNetDaily. Visit www.worldahead.com to learn more.
To interview Eric M. Jackson, contact World Ahead Media at (310) 961-4170.
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