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In November 1996, e Bay entered into its first third-party licensing deal, with a company called Electronic Travel Auction to use Smart Market Technology to sell plane tickets and other travel products.
Growth was phenomenal; in January 1997 the site hosted 2,000,000 auctions, compared with 250,000 during the whole of 1996.
Although some state laws require resident purchasers to pay use tax on out-of-state purchases, it is not a common practice.
However Value Added Tax (VAT), the EU countries' sales tax, is different.
The company officially changed the name of its service from Auction Web to e Bay in September 1997.
Originally, the site belonged to Echo Bay Technology Group, Omidyar's consulting firm.
takes from £0.15 to a maximum rate of £3 per £100 for an ordinary listing and up to 10% of the final price.
Strategic international expansion has failed in Taiwan and Japan, where Yahoo!
had a head start, and New Zealand, where Trade Me is the dominant online auction website.
The website is free to use for buyers, but sellers are charged fees for listing items after a limited number of free listings, and again when those items are sold.
In addition to its original auction-style sales, the website has since evolved and expanded to include "Buy It Now" shopping; shopping by UPC, ISBN, or other kind of SKU number (via Half.com); online classified advertisements (via Kijiji or e Bay Classifieds); online event ticket trading (via Stub Hub); and other services.