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eBay Still Likes Skype

1:40 PM -- STANFORD, Calif. -- Granted, you wouldn't expect the CEO of eBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) to slag on Skype in public. So maybe I'm not reporting anything shocking when I say John Donahoe says he's thrilled with Skype's financial situation.

"I'll take a $500 million business growing at 30 to 40 percent with high teens margins," he said at today's Stanford Accel Symposium, an annual gathering for investors and entrepreneurs.

Table 1: Skype Revenues
Fiscal Year Revenues ($M)
2006
189.1
2007
364.6
2008
525.8
For fiscal years ending Dec. 31.
Source: eBay


It's been noted that Skype hasn't produced much benefit for eBay itself or for PayPal , and Donohoe didn't deny that. The top priorities for Skype and PayPal don't overlap at all. That's OK. Skype is a "great standalone growth seed in our portfolio," he says.

Donohoe was the kickoff speaker for the event, which is organized by Accel Partners and hosted by Stanford University in a new alumni center that was conveniently built with no parking added. This picture, taken during a coffee break, might give you a flavor for the wood-toned, HGTV airiness of the place:

The event, built around the hot tech topics of the day, is consistently good, even though it's not held at a superior university. Right now, Matthew Barzun of the Barack Obama campaign, and Chris Hughes, a Facebook founder and architect of Obama's digital campaign strategies, are telling stories about online community and the Iowa caucuses. Later, there'll be a conversation with Jayshree Ullal, who's now CEO of Arista Networks Inc. (See Ullal Lands in the Cloud.)

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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