XS Items – 2021 eBay Little to Large seller

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We are publishing the stories behind the 2021 eBay for Business Awards winners and the winner of the eBay From Little to Large Award is Ian Montgomery and XS Items.

The idea for XS Items was sparked when two of its co-founders, Len and Cliff, were relaxing round a swimming pool in Florida discussing business models which could be transposed from the US to the UK. They landed on eBay Trading Assistants – companies set up to sell items on behalf of individuals, companies and charities on eBay.

On their return to the UK, Len and Cliff brought in two more founders, Ian and Gareth. After months of meticulous planning, XS Items was launched in Chelmsford, Essex, offering an eBay drop ship service. However, in 2007 the founders faced their biggest challenge: the business was simply not working. Overheads were outstripping sales and changes had to be made.

The team decided to focus on business-to-business operations and reduce their operational locations to one. In early 2008, a corner was turned and the business secured several high-level contracts, which paired with the surge in eBay’s growth, helped propel the business back into growth.

Since then, the business has gone from strength to strength, expanding to a team of 40 employees with annual sales of over £6m. They have recently also developed a direct-to-consumer service, idoocommerce, for brands looking to make the most of the eBay marketplace opportunity.

The four founders are continuing to expand their knowledge of the sector and eBay.

“We started XS Items back in 2005, after seeing an opportunity to build a business on eBay connecting companies who want to shift non-pristine or slow-moving stock, but might not have the processes to reach their potential. That’s where our revenue share business model comes in. It’s incredible to see how far we’ve come in the last 16 years, the number of businesses we now support and how much our knowledge of the sector and eBay has grown. Winning the From Little to Large Award this year is a fantastic milestone, and we’re so pleased. Here’s to the next 16 years!”
– Ian Montgomery, co-founder, XS Items

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