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Reports: Shinsegae, Lotte Among eBay Korea’s Potential Buyers

EBay headquarters. Shutterstock.

Last month, Investment banks sent out letters to potential buyers, including some of the country’s top retailers and tech firms, Korea Times reports.

Preliminary bidding kicks off March 16; private equity firm MBK Partners and tech company Kakao have reportedly also expressed interest.

eBay Korea, which owns local platforms GMarket (acquired for $1.2 billion in 2009), Auction and G9, was put up for sale in January. The firm, which is wholly owned by eBay’s UK subsidiary and reportedly boasts a 5 trillion won ($4.5 billion) price tag, makes up 11 percent of eBay’s total revenues and accounted for 12 percent of the country’s e-commerce transactions last year, according to Statistics Korea.

As e-tailers like Coupang and Naver assert their dominance over South Korea’s growing e-commerce industry, traditional retail businesses are digitising to keep up. While Shinsegae operates multiple e-commerce channels in addition to its brick-and-mortar stores, an open market platform would round out its online portfolio. Meanwhile, Lotte has struggled to grow its online presence.

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The State of Fashion: Technology
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The State of Fashion: Technology