What the web thinks of eBay’s Magento buyout

When auction giant eBay announced this week that it was buying out the well-known ecommerce platform Magento, reaction was varied.

In announcing the buyout eBay President and CEO John Donahoe stated that Magento would merge with the company’s own open source, online retailing platform X.Commerce. Precisely how X.Commerce will work, and what part Magento has to play in it will only be revealed in October during eBay’s X.Commerce Innovate Conference.

Here’s what some of the web’s commentators had to say:


Mashable’s Christina Warren noted the uncertainty around the fate of Magento’s open-source Community Edition, which is currently a free tool aimed primarily at developers and enthusiastic hobbyists.

On the other side of the coin, Warren notes that “Magento is an opportunity for eBay to offer businesses a soup-to-nuts ecommerce solution, from hosting to payment processing to mobile.”

Computer World:

Juan Carlso Perez, reporting for Computer World, suggested that there could be a tie in with eBay’s buyout of Magento and its earlier buyout of GSI commerce in March this year.

Perez stated that technologies from the two companies would give eBay “a strong suite of enterprise-class ecommerce developer tools”, through which they could “offer large retailers help with building their own storefronts along with mobile and social commerce”

Wall Street Journal

Tess Stynes of the Dow Jones Newswires agency, reporting for the Wall Street Journal took note of the number of company purchases which eBay has been able to make since its 2009 sale of the stake it held in Skype.

Stynes also noted that eBay “has been under pressure to revive its stalling market-place business which has come under pressure from more user-friendly sites such as Amazon.com Inc” and that the buoyout gives it access to some of Magento’s major clients such as the Ford Motor Company and Swiss watch making group Swatch AG.

Internet Retailer:

Paul Dermery, the Managing editor for ecommerce news specialists, Internet Retailer reports that analysts predict that the buyout has the potential to be beneficial for both eBay and Magento.

Dermery also picked up on the possibility that the move may be part of an eBay plan to move into more direct competition with Amazon. eBay, he says “appears to be adopting the Amazon.com Inc. strategy of offering retailers e-commerce tools, in Amazon’s case through its Amazon Services unit.”

He spoke to Nikki Baird, managing partner at research and advisory firm Retail Systems Research LLC, who added that such a move would see eBay “enabling sellers with more tools, and moving high-volume sellers into more of a traditional e-commerce storefront …Then eBay can be both technology enabler and marketplace all in one.”

The Register

The Register’s Gavin Clarke was able to source more information on the workings of X.Commerce. He reports that the one project in the works by X.Commerce is an all-in-one app store, designed to give merchants “a system for marketing, promotions, payment, checkout, and shipping”.

He was able to get an interview with the head of the X.Commerce team, Matthew Megnerink. According to Clarke, Megnerink describes what eBay is doing with X.Commerce as an operating system for commerce “that will give developers one place where they sell their commerce apps and where retailers can built exciting web stores without needing to search for e-commerce modules from across the web that they must then stitch together.”



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