AOL Time Warner Inc. has tapped the ad budget of one of the last remaining dot-coms that actually has one.
Online auctioneer eBay Inc. will be placing ads across AOL Time Warner TV networks, magazines and Web sites over the next three years, according to a pact announced today. The agreement expands on a relationship between AOL and eBay that began in 1997, when eBay began promoting its service across AOL's online properties.
Now, eBay will commence marketing campaigns in magazines such as Fortune and Time, on television networks CNN and TNT, and on AOL, Compuserve and Netscape.
The terms of the deal were not disclosed, but according to eBay's quarterly report, issued today, the deal with AOL Time Warner will "not result in a material change in our projected operating results and liquidity."
"Working across AOL Time Warner's tremendous assortment of media properties will allow us to bring eBay to more consumers than ever before," said eBay president and CEO Meg Whitman, in a statement.
In addition to the planned ad buys, the agreement extends an arrangement where AOL Time Warner acts as an exclusive third-party sales force for eBay. "It's like an ad agency," said eBay spokesman Kevin Pursglove. "It allows AOL's proven sales staff to work for eBay."
EBay, which has 34 million registered users, agreed to pay US$79 million in 1999 to promote its auction site across AOL properties. At a time when most dot-coms are suffering, the auctioneer reported $24.6 million in revenue for the second quarter of 2001, more than triple the level reported a year ago.
EBay shares were up slightly more than 2 percent in Tuesday morning trading, to $62.10. AOL Time Warner shares were down just over 3 percent, to $41.60, on reports that the company will lay of as many as 1,000 employees in its online division to meet earnings targets this year.