eBay Responds To Investor Operations, Spinoff Proposals

With activist investor action looming, eBay has responded to a letter from Elliott International, a fund with an interest in the company, suggesting changes in operations and spinoffs of StubHub and the eBay classifieds group.

The e-tailer’s letter read:

“The eBay Board and leadership team regularly engage with our shareholders and value their input. We are focused on delivering value for our shareholders, customers and employees by driving the best choice, the most relevance and the most powerful selling platform to deliver growth. Accordingly, we appreciate Elliott’s recognition of the strength and power of eBay’s business and will carefully review and evaluate Elliott’s proposals. We look forward to the opportunity to engage with Elliott, as we do with all shareholders.”

The Elliott letter was addressed to the eBay board. The Elliott letter read, in part:

“I am writing to you on behalf of Elliott Associates, L.P. and Elliott International, L.P. Elliott beneficially owns over 4% of eBay Inc., making us one of the company’s largest investors. At approximately $1.4 billion in market value, this sizeable investment demonstrates our strong belief in the value opportunity at eBay.

The purpose of this letter is to share our perspectives as a large shareholder and provide our specific thoughts on how eBay can become a better and more valuable company. Elliott believes that by taking steps to unlock strategic value, refocus on the core Marketplace and improve execution– a plan we call Enhancing eBay– the company will grow faster and deliver meaningful operational improvements. As a more focused and efficiently run business, we believe eBay can achieve a value of $55 to $63 plus per share by the end of 2020, representing upside of more than 75% to 100% within the next two years.”