What's the Bottom Line for eBay Investors -- Buy or Sell?


Originally rising to prominence as one of the darlings of the original tech bubble, eBay proved last year that its days of generating massive returns for shareholders are far from behind it. However, the eBay investors find today looks barely recognizable when compared to its original online auction business model -- and that's a good thing. Thanks to a set of savvy business decisions, eBay has refashioned itself into an e-commerce powerhouse to rival online megastore Amazon. However, after putting up some amazing numbers in 2012, does eBay still have what it takes to keep investors happy? The Fool recently created a premium research report that breaks down in clear detail each facet of eBay's online empire. To help inform our readers, we've included a brief excerpt from this report in the text below. Enjoy!

John Donahoe joined eBay in 2005 as the head of its marketplaces division. He took over for Meg Whitman as CEO three years later. Whitman now is the CEO at Hewlett-Packard, though she's widely viewed as the CEO that helped eBay grow into a global powerhouse.

Donahoe received a fair share of criticism early in his tenure, largely on the heels of eBay policy changes that resulted in higher fees for sellers and moves that helped attract more traditional merchants at the expense of the indie sellers that originally populated the site.

The Foolish bottom line
There's a lot to like with eBay. Beyond the growth, eBay's balance sheet had $10.8 billion in cash, cash equivalents, and non-equity investments by the end of September. It can't go on a shopping spree since only a third of that sum is in the U.S., but the cash cushion is nice.

eBay is also not afraid to get ahead of the competition.

eBay Now, a service that launched in San Francisco this summer, offers delivery from local sellers in as little as an hour. Amazon.com and Wal-Mart thought that they would turn heads by offering same-day deliveries in some markets this holiday season, but those are morning orders delivered at night.

The company revised its guidance slightly higher in October. It now sees revenue growing 20% to 21% to $13.95 billion to $41.1 billion for all of 2012. eBay's adjusted earnings per share target is now between $2.32 and $2.35, suggesting bottom-line growth of 14% to 16%.

Given eBay's consistent recent performance, the stock has earned its market premium.

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The article What's the Bottom Line for eBay Investors -- Buy or Sell? originally appeared on Fool.com.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Aristotle Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Amazon.com and eBay. The Motley Fool owns shares of Amazon.com. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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