Is eBay waffling on Skype's departure?


Last April, Skype seemed as good as gone from the eBay stable. Word was that the parent company wanted to spin out the unit as a multi-billion dollar IPO to partially recoup the $3.1 billion former CEO Meg Whitman had spent on the deal. So it was odd that there was no mention of a Skype IPO in eBay's quarterly earnings conference on July 22. Rather, the auction giant's execs said they were "making progress" on separation.

That said, with $170 million in revenues in the last quarter and compound annual revenue growth rate of roughly 25 percent, Skype is only a year or so away from becoming a $1 billion revenue company. What's more, Skype likely boasts stupendous, software-like gross margins. With legal problems still casting a long shadow over eBay's Skype assets, could present eBay CEO John Donahoe be shelving IPO plans?