eBay buys top Dutch ads site

Online auction powerhouse eBay has scooped up Dutch classifieds website Marktplaats.nl.

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Online auction powerhouse eBay has scooped up Dutch classifieds website Marktplaats.nl.

The company said it had paid €225m (£157m) in cash to site owner Het Goed Beheer, and will continue to operate the website as a separate business as part of its plans to increase e-commerce activities in the Netherlands.

Marktplaats is the leading classifieds site in the Netherlands, offering more than a million listings at any given time. The Netherlands is a growing internet market, with business-to-consumer e-commerce expected to reach $15bn (£8bn) by 2007, according to researcher IDC.

The acquisition is the latest in a series of eBay investments in the classifieds market. In August, it took a 25% stake in US site Craigslist and in January it bought German car classifieds site Mobile.de.

Scarlet Pruitt writes for IDG News Service

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