eBay may appeal ACCC PayPal deal block

With the ACCC appearing likely to stop eBay's exclusive deal with PayPal, the online selling giant has today not ruled out appealing against an unfavourable decision.
Written by Marcus Browne, Contributor on

With the ACCC appearing likely to stop eBay's exclusive deal with PayPal, the online auction giant has today refused to rule out appealing against an unfavourable decision.

While the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) believes that an exclusive arrangement between eBay and PayPal may have some security benefits for users, the competition watchdog has moved to block eBay's proposed deal with the payment company.


"The ACCC acknowledges that having PayPal as the only payment provider has the potential to deliver some benefits to users, such as increased buyer protection insurance in certain circumstances. However, the ACCC believes that consumers are in the best position to decide which payment method is most suitable for them," said ACCC chairman Graham Samuel in a statement.

"The notified conduct denies them that choice. Accordingly, the ACCC considers that these benefits do not outweigh the anti-competitive effects of the conduct," he said, before ruling that the company delay its move to a singular payment method — PayPal — until 15 July, pending a final decision on the matter.

The online auction giant fired back at the regulator, with a spokesperson saying the company was "disappointed" with the decision, and insisting that its "paramount objective" with the deal is the "safety and security" of eBay's members, but said it will be complying with the ACCC's requirement to extend the availability of other payment methods until the middle of next month.

However, the internet auctioneer has today confirmed the possibility of continuing the dispute past the July deadline — should the ACCC not rule in its favour — after a spokesperson told ZDNet.com.au, that "eBay is not ruling anything out at this stage", following its statement on Friday that "eBay believes the consumer benefits of this initiative are worth fighting for on behalf of its buyers."

Today's response comes after the revelation a fortnight ago that an apparently "anonymous" public submission on the matter — questioning the supposed benefits of an eBay-PayPal deal — was in fact issued by search giant Google.

Editorial standards