eBay Inks a No-Brainer

In a move that seems almost like a no-brainer, auction space leader eBay said it will sponsor the television program “Antiques Roadshow,” produced by WGBH in Boston and rated as the PBS network’s most-watched prime time series.

Spending details were not disclosed, but San Jose, Calif.-based eBay said it is the first Internet company to be a national underwriter of the show.

As part of the deal, eBay users and PBS viewers can access content provided weekly by “Antiques Roadshow” about various appraisal and collecting topics as well as show information. eBay will host a destination page on its site entitled “Discovering America’s Hidden Treasures.”

Consumers interested in learning more about items often featured on “Antiques Roadshow” will be able to access complementary eBay categories, including collectibles, antiques and art, coins and stamps, pottery and glass, toys and dolls, and jewelry.

eBay Motors, eBay’s auction-style marketplace for buying and selling all things automotive, including classic cars, will be featured in some of the sponsor credits shown at the beginning and end of each TV airing.

The show has an audience of about 15 million. On the program, specialists from the top auction houses and independent dealers and appraisers from across the nation travel to U.S. cities, offering free appraisals of antiques and collectibles.

“eBay and ‘Antiques Roadshow’ are brands that have intrinsic emotional appeal associated with discovery and the treasure hunt,” said Bill Cobb, senior vice president of global marketing for eBay. “The eBay marketplace is where people make connections and share their passion for collectibles and treasures with a history. Our affiliation with ‘Antiques Roadshow’ will only strengthen his position.”

Separately, technology information company CMP Media LLC, signed a marketing and promotional agreement with eBay calling for CMP’s CommWeb group to promote the computer, B2B, telecom, networking and information technology equipment available on eBay. Financial arrangements were not disclosed.

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