Two Minutes with our European Chief Paul Todd

Adam Kohler, eBay Staff Writer

eBay's European Chief, who is helping to drive growth in Europe by igniting entrepreneurship, discusses the untapped potential of eBay.

Paul Todd, senior vice president eBay EMEA, leads operations in the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, as well emerging high-growth markets including Turkey. Paul is driving growth in Europe by reigniting entrepreneurship in the region, helping small business unlock global opportunities.  Paul also holds a global role leading eBay’s marketing worldwide to ensure the organization can capitalize on the benefits of scope and scale while retaining the ability to tailor to each region’s unique needs.

What are you most excited about as eBay enters its next chapter?

eBay has an incredible positioning and incredible strength, and I feel like we've only scratched the surface of the opportunity. I think eBay's heritage means that we can play to a lot of the trends that are happening globally, such as the circular economy, which is about encouraging responsible product use and reusing items which can be reused, either by recycling them or selling them on. That’s at the heart of what eBay is – turning consumers into entrepreneurs and allowing them to breathe new life into old products. 

What are your primary goals for eBay in EMEA?

First of all, we are focused on product-driven goals, such as improving SEO, structured data, mobile innovation and search enhancements. The projects that RJ Pittman and Steve Fisher are driving horizontally across the company will have huge impact on our business and our next path forward.

Secondly, it will be really important for us to build our shipping portfolio and then build a loyalty proposition around that. Additionally, extending into other geographies and adding customer-to-customer components to build opportunities for buyers and sellers is going to be really important.

What inspires you about working for eBay?

It is a multifaceted business in a marketplace that’s incredibly vibrant, and yet it works so simply in an incredibly complex environment. The other thing I like about working at eBay is that almost everybody I encounter has a personal story about eBay – something they sold orsome incredible collectible they found on eBay.

Name one thing that you do every day.

I try every day to read literature, so that I actually have some mechanism for pointing my mind in a completely different direction. I love literature, and even if I fall asleep after the first page, I find time to read every day.My favorite book is The Master of Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov, written in the 1930s in Russia and it's about Satan visiting Moscow and the havoc that he creates in the process. It's a protest against the regime that existed at the time and I think the inventiveness and creativity that came out of that incredibly stark environment is fascinating. Plus, it's a really entertaining read.