eBay's COO steps down

Chief Operating Officer Brian Swette is stepping down from his position and won't be replaced.
Written by ZDNET Editors, Contributor on
eBay Chief Operating Officer Brian Swette is stepping down from his position to spend more time with his family, the auction giant announced Monday.

eBay does not plan to replace Swette, the company said. Instead, the San Jose, Calif.-based company will divide Swette's responsibilities among its other executives.

Despite resigning as COO, Swette will continue with eBay as a senior adviser to Chief Executive Meg Whitman and as eBay's head of corporate development, the company said. In that position, he will oversee eBay's marketing and sponsorship efforts.

Swette did a "decent" job of running eBay's daily operations, and his resignation as COO is a "big announcement," said Jeetil Patel, a financial analyst with Deutsche Bank Alex Brown. But eBay's management is deep enough to take on Swette's responsibilities, Patel said.

"They already have enough players to handle the business at hand today and going forward," Patel said. "Any of these types of changes could make a big impact. But as far as I can see, this isn't going to make a big change on a day-to-day basis."

Swette was named eBay's chief operating officer in November 1999 and was charged with managing the company's day-to-day operations. He previously worked as eBay's vice president of marketing and as an executive with Pepsi-Cola.

eBay made the announcement after the close of trading on the Nasdaq national market on Monday. eBay's stock closed regular trading up $2.70, or 4 percent, to $69.29. In after-hours trading on the Island ECN, eBay shares were down 55 cents to $68.74. --Troy Wolverton, Special to ZDNet News

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