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Ebay Competes for Consumer Electronics Business

Boot Camp feature for Monday, December 2, 2002

Ebay bids to become your computer and electronics shop of choice. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. When it comes to buying consumer electronics products online... Ebay may not be the first name that comes to mind. Some of the big names in brick and mortar stores are pushing online sales... .so is Amazon.com. But Ebay's director of computer categories... Todd Lutwak says...

Ebay has a thriving electronics business. In the United States, we have over 2.2 billion dollars in sales this year of Ebay computer and consumer electronics products."

Ebay is best known for its online auction roots. But more and more of its business comes from items being sold at fixed prices... just like Amazon and other e-retailers... and sometimes the items come directly from manufacturers...

"Now companies like IBM, Dell, Kodak, Ritz Camera ... they are selling products on the Ebay marketplace as well as over 250 thousand smaller sellers from individuals to small businesses that are also selling electronics products on the site every day."

If you aren't necessarily looking for brand new top of the line models... you can save some money searching through the Ebay listings. And sometimes you can find products before they are introduced in the U.S. market...

"There might be a cellular telephone that was maybe launched in the Japanese market or the German market first and then entrepreneurs from around the world will take those products and put them up for sale on Ebay.com and open them up to the U.S. audience."

Buying that way can be tricky when it comes to warranties and such, but lots of buyers are willing to take the risk. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.