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uShip, eBay Deal Puts Spotlight on Larger-Than-Parcel Shipping

AUSTIN, Texas – March 10, 2014 – Don LeMaster has always had a thing for the rare and quirky.  As an antiques and collectibles seller on eBay with no two items alike, he’s found all his out-of-area sales have at least one thing in common:  a cumbersome, expensive shipping process. 

Fortunately, arranging Larger-Than-Parcel (LTP) delivery is about to get easier and more affordable, thanks to an agreement between online shipping marketplace uShip and eBay Inc., one of the largest online marketplaces.

uShip-powered delivery options will be incorporated across eBay categories that frequently contain LTP goods over 150lbs and buyer-arranged shipping. Initially available in eBay Motors’ U.S. vehicles, motorcycles, powersports and boats, more categories will be added this spring. Within a year, uShip will be integrated into global eBay properties, more deeply into listings and in the buyer checkout process.

“Many of my items don’t meet conventional shipping size requirements, and packing and crating quickly gets too expensive and time consuming,” said Don, owner of Red Rooster Antiques & Design Center in New Braunfels, Texas (eBay ID: cool-stuff-in-texas), who’s shipped everything from vintage signs and oversized disco balls to a 7-foot Bob’s Big Boy statue. “I knew there had to be a better way.”

Don’s story (see video) mirrors that of many people on eBay that buy or sell as many as three million larger-than-parcel (LTP) items every year.   While LTP on eBay represents a small percentage of total items sold, larger items tend be have higher selling prices so represent a disproportionately high share of Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV).

The uShip-eBay agreement is new; however, Don, like many buyers and sellers, has already discovered how uShip can facilitate LTP commerce on eBay:  “A few years ago I found this old vintage 20-foot tall rocket ship. While I really wanted it so I could resell it, I knew it would be impossible to transport. Then someone mentioned uShip. Since then, I’ve found uShip totally tears down the boundaries of where you can buy something and where you can sell it.  And now that process will be even easier.”

Since 2007, 93,000 users have linked their eBay accounts with uShip, which has seen over 560,000 eBay items valued at $712M listed for shipping.   To date, total shipping cost of eBay goods on uShip is nearly $75M, about 15 percent of uShip’s all-time total shipping volume of $500M.  Many eBay items have even been seen on A&E reality show “Shipping Wars,” which features uShip.

“uShip’s agreement with eBay is a natural fit for several reasons,” said Matt Chasen, CEO and founder of uShip. “First, we’ve spent the last 10 years pioneering collaborative consumption and building a global network of more than 500,000 registered carriers that can handle LTP specialty shipments, whether that’s vehicles, heavy equipment, household goods, traditional freight or the truly unusual.”

“Second, eBay users are very familiar with uShip’s eBay-like feedback system, which helps them choose a carrier from among those with an average score greater than 97 percent positive.  And finally, price – eBay buyers have saved $20M in shipping costs through uShip.  For transporter service providers on uShip, this translates into more opportunity with extremely high-intent shipping customers,” said Chasen.

“As one of the largest online marketplaces for all things automotive, we aim to provide a complete lifecycle of services for vehicles from purchase to delivery,” says Bryan Murphy, head of eBay Motors. “Our work with uShip allows consumers the flexibility to evaluate transporters and select the delivery option that works best for their needs.”

About uShip

uShip is the global transport marketplace that’s reinventing the traditional logistics process.  By moving it entirely online and to mobile devices, it brings greater automation, transparency and efficiency to the traditionally inefficient shipping industry.  Primarily serving the commercial freight, vehicles, and household goods markets, the uShip freight exchange seamlessly connects shipping customers – from freight brokers to business shippers and consumers – with feedback-rated transportation service providers that engage in online fixed price, spot market and auction-based transactions.  Based in Austin, Texas, and Amsterdam, the company operates globally with localized sites in 19 countries and regions on six continents.  It is backed by Benchmark Capital, DAG Ventures and Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers, and is featured on “Shipping Wars,” the real-life television series broadcast worldwide.