Paul Todd SVP eBay’s thoughts on sustainability

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Paul Todd SVP eBayPaul Todd is Senior Vice President of eBay, responsible for eBay’s business and operations across the whole of the EMEA region. His aim is to help small businesses unlock global opportunities and drive growth.

He’s just published an article on “How Business and Technology Are Making Sustainability Mainstream“.

RecycleThere are very few people who would argue against being “green” but it means very different things to different people. Some will simply think dropping their daily paper into the recycling along with a coke can and milk carton is being green, whilst others will think about the life cycle of every single item they purchase and consider if it’s really necessary and how they’ll dispose of it at the end of it’s life.

Paul discusses how a massive 64% of people ‘care’ about green issues, but not enough for sustainability to be the sole driver behind their purchasing decisions. He says that “Sustainability is driven forward by giving both these groups the means and incentives to buy and sell.“.

That’s where some interesting partnerships come into play, a couple of which have been running for a year or so on eBay.

IN 2013, Patagonia were the first to set up a multi-seller branded shop under a Common Threads Partnership program. It enables sellers of used Patagonia outdoor clothing to resell their items which will appear in the branded shop front. Similarly Vaude have a re-commerce shop for used outdoor clothing and equipment in Germany.

Marketplaces, both eBay and others that support the sales of used items, have possibly done more to drive reuse of products than any other initiative. Largely, especially for the 64% who care but not enough to change their lifestyle, the financial rewards of turning their unwanted possessions into cash is all the driver they need to be more green.

Paul concludes that “Sustainability is here to stay, but not purely for sustainability’s sake. It is also driven by consumer desires for experiences and value, and enabled by technology-led innovations“.

You can read the full article on LinkedIN.

2 Responses

  1. I’ve met Paul and been impressed by him. It’s great to know that there’s someone as thoughtful, driven and capable in leadership at eBay — and he’s right about the fact that we all want a better planet.

    One of the things that eBay has always been distinctively good at — that it has deep in its DNA – is the sale of people’s second-hand goods. There is no better or more energy-efficient way to recycle than to encourage re-use — and eBay is distinctively good at it (try selling second-hand goods on Amazon — unless they are media, it’s typically thin-pickings in my experience).

    Helping people to use the platform and to have their unwanted goods — which are just too good to throw away — get a new lease of life with a new owner is a really worthy direction for eBay that I think we can all get behind.

  2. ebay exsists because of pre owned and used ,it lost its direction & soul years ago



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