TWay.com’s President Sees Benefits to Limiting Online Auction Operations to the Domestic Market

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The industry’s online giants have expanded rapidly to other countries, but that expansion has led to a number of problems and concerns.

TWay.Com President Dean Burnetti said today the company will continue to focus on its domestic operations, because international expansion has caused headaches for the online auction industry’s major players.

Burnetti said major industry players such as EBay have admitted to encountering a significant menu of problems as they have expanded rapidly into various foreign markets.

“Their experience tells us that while there may be profits to be had by expanding into other lands, there are significant problems and challenges that can lead to legal problems, declines in customer service and other negative factors that we would just as soon avoid,” Burnetti said.

In an annual filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, EBay said that 46 percent of its net revenues in 2005 came from countries outside the U.S. But the company also listed a number of serious challenges that it encounters by doing business in foreign lands.

“In many countries, we compete with local companies who understand the local market better than we do, and we may not benefit from first-to-market advantages,” The EBay filing said, “We may not be successful in expanding into particular international markets or in generating revenues from foreign operations.”

As an example of those challenges, EBay noted in its filing that it had entered the Japanese market, only to withdraw those operations in 2002.

“Even if we are successful, we expect the costs of operating new sites to exceed our net revenues for at least 12 months in most countries today,” EBay reported in its filing.

Burnetti said EBay’s domestic customers have been underwriting the cost of EBay’s aggressive expansion into China and other foreign countries. He said he does not believe that TWay’s domestic customers should share a similar burden.

“If we were to expand into other countries, company revenue provided by our valued U.S. customers would have to be counted on to finance that expansion,” Burnetti said. “That’s not something that we feel comfortable asking them to do.”

Burnetti said TWay invests its profits in better service and more features, rather than in foreign expansion. An example of those service and feature upgrades was the complete website overhaul that TWay announced earlier this year.

The TWay site now offers such new features as customer forums, a new color scheme, and a split-view approach, with half the page devoted to auctions and the other half devoted to TWay “stores.”

ABOUT TWAY.COM: TWay.com moves online buying and selling to the next level with unparalleled flexibility, options and service. It also offers marketing partnership opportunities to savvy entrepreneurs. To learn more, visit the website at http://www.TWay.com.

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