eBay profits soar

Busy, busy

eBay's Q1 revenues leapt 60 per cent year-on-year to $756m (Q1, 2003: $476m) on the back of acquisitions and strong organic growth. And profits are doing very nicely too, almost doubling to $200m, or $0.30 a share (Q1, '03: $104m, or $0.17 a share).

CEO Meg Whitman said Q1 was an "outstanding quarter" for the company. And it is difficult to disagree. The US company was helped out by a a $15m one-off contribution from the ending of some property sub-leases; and the rise of the euro against the dollar came in handy, too. But the performance metrics are looking very sunny as well.

During the quarter the online auctioneer gained 9.9m users, taking total membership to 105m. Active membership grew 45 per cent year-on-year to 45.6m - each of these people bought or sold $550 worth of goods, on average, over the last year.

eBay has raised guidance for the full year, forecasting $3.15bn revenues, up $150m on previous estimates. It is gunning for annual profits of $1.06 per share, seven cents higher than before. ®

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