Could Meg Whitman make Zaarly into eBay.2

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We TameBay editors have often talked about ex-eBay execs. What happens once they leave eBay, how long do we continue to blog about them and quite frankly will anyone care? Well in this case it might be worth noting – Meg Whitman (now CEO of HP) has just joined the board of directors of Zaarly.

No one has heard of Zaarly (at least not that I’m aware of), so why does this matter? Well Zaarly aim to build a marketplace enabling people to ask for anything from people nearby. They currently have a few dozen employees- That sounds very much like an up and coming marketplace business that Meg joined once before. That company was called eBay and they too only had a dew dozen employees when Meg joined them. Meg went on to oversee the growth of eBay to the marketplace it is today, so the question is could she do it again?

Zaarly aims to build a community driven ad-hoc, consumer-to-consumer business largely on a mobile platform. Listen to eBay PR and everything is mobile these days – could Zaarly bridge the gap between you, and whoever has what you want, the skills you want, or the spare time to do the jobs you want done? Want a DJ for a party, a builder, or just someone to feed the cat and walk the dog when you’re away for a night? Zaarly might be able to connect you with the person that you need.

Zaarly isn’t available in the UK yet, but apparently has over 100,000 members and they’re growing. They’ve also just landed a $14.1M investment.

Meg Whitman did it once with eBay, could she do it again with Zaarly?

14 Responses

  1. when whitman did it with ebay there was no ebay no gum tree no amazon,
    to compete with

  2. Agreed. And there are already sites and services out there that have tried to do this sort of thing. I can see the mobile angle giving it an edge, but I’m just not sure that this concept equals cash. Although, I notice some investors strongly disagree with me. ;o)

  3. $14.1m investment… I wonder how much she would’ve been offered on Dragon’s Den?

    Does someone know something we don’t?

  4. eBay couldn’t get it to work with Kijiji (now eBay Classifieds) so wonder what makes Meg think it will work now? Maybe because it’s a mobile app?

    Also, is it just me or is the teaser video incredibly boring?



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TameBay Morsels for 29th May 2009

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