eBay.ca opens up online recycling depot

eBay.ca Canada says asset disposal presents the channel with an excellent source of incremental service revenue to keep customers and acquire new ones.

“”Twenty-five per cent of current solution providers provide asset disposal opportunities for their clients,”” said Jordan Banks, head of business

and strategic development at eBay.ca, quoting a recent IDC study.

“”It’s a big number but it also speaks to the opportunity considering three quarters of them don’t.””

Last year eBay recorded 114 million registered users on its site. While this has made it difficult for resellers to differentiate themselves in the past, Banks hopes eBay’s new IT asset disposal program will change that.

IT recycling program

The IT Asset Recovery Centre is specifically targeted at VARs and solution providers as a way to safely and cost efficiently dispose of electronics items.

It provides companies looking to sell old electronic equipment with an online directory of partners who specialize in asset disposal.

The way it works is the solution provider sells the PCs, networking gear, telephone systems, etc. on behalf of the company and works out a financial arrangement with them for the service.

eBay said the profit margin varies from seller to seller.

“”This was a great way for us to offer our users a way to personally make a small difference in their communities by ensuring the safe disposal of their electronic items.

“”That was really important to us.”” said Banks.

The centre also allows VARs to become providers, added Banks. “”Some of them are looking for additional supply so by becoming a provider it allows them to tap into the people that have the supply and are just looking for somebody to sell it on their behalf,”” he said.

For example, 23 per cent of VARs have sourced on eBay in the past year to equip businesses or resell, he said.

Program requirements

Solution providers are required to be a Trading Assistant before becoming part of the IT Asset Recovery Centre.

Trading Assistants are “”experienced”” eBay sellers that have indicated they are willing to sell items for a fee. Criteria includes experience selling items on eBay and at least 97 per cent positive feedback from buyers and sellers on previous transactions.

Banks said this provides this set of solution providers with a great opportunity to differentiate themselves among other sellers.

Asset recovery growing trend

Eddie Chan, an analyst at IDC Canada, said asset recovery has other implications for businesses outside of social responsibility to the environment.

“”There’s an element of a lot of products retired from Y2K,”” he said, adding that it’s going to become increasingly more important with laws already in place that ban disposal of lead. Chan said HP, IBM and Dell are leading the way with their own asset recovery programs already in place.

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