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Net liquidator spills goods onto eBay

Overstock.com, seller of manufacturers' excess inventory at a discount, is experimenting with sales on the leading auction site and plans to list thousands of items by the end of the month.

    Overstock.com is the latest company to try its hand at selling on eBay.

    The online liquidator is already experimenting with sales on the leading auction site and plans to list thousands of items on eBay by the end of the month, company CEO Patrick Byrne said. The company, which buys excess inventory from manufacturers and sells it at a discount, expects the auction sales will bring in new business and new customers to Salt Lake City-based Overstock, Byrne said.

    "Twenty-three million people a month are going to eBay and we want them to know about Overstock," Byrne said. "They're bargain hunters and (bargains are) exactly what we provide."

    Representatives from eBay did not return calls seeking comment.

    eBay has made a concerted effort to move beyond its core collectibles market and attract more businesses to its site.

    Overstock joins a growing list of companies trying to tap into eBay's community of bidders and sellers. Last month, eZiba.com, an Amazon.com-backed e-tailer of handcrafted goods, set up shop on eBay. Sun Microsystems and Ritz Camera's RitzCamera.com are also selling goods on the giant auction site. Meanwhile, government agencies such as the United States Postal Service and the State of Texas have also begun selling on eBay.

    Overstock expects to sell from $1 million to $2 million worth of items through eBay each month on top of the $6.5 million Overstock sells monthly through its own Web site, Byrne said. The company plans to experiment on other online auction sites.

    Byrne added that Overstock plans to act as a middleman between manufacturers who want to sell on eBay and the leading auction site. The company's experience with shipping to individual consumers should give it a leg up on competitors, he said.

    "We have better fulfillment than the average guy," he said.