The US headquarters decided that the company's European marketing will be controlled from Zurich, while the technical design for Ebay's European sites will be moved to London.
“All organizational units in other countries will be abolished and moved to Zurich and London. Germany's Ebay operations will in effect be shut down,” an unnamed employee told the magazine. Only the 900 people working in the Europe-wide customer service department and a small PR group will continue to work in Berlin. Germany is Ebay's second biggest market after the United States.
Ebay recently announced some 100 of the total 1,250 employees in Germany will be laid off. The affected workers have already received their pink slips and Ebay is now negotiating who will be relocated to London or Zurich. How many employees will have to move is not yet known.
The daily paper Der Tagesspiegel reported on Monday that the reorganization was preceded by a month-long power struggle between the head of Ebay in Germany Stefan Groß-Selbeck and the US headquarters in San José. “Groß-Selbeck ultimately lost,” the Ebay insider told Wirtschaftswoche. Whether Groß-Selbeck will stay with the company after the defeat is uncertain.