The growing number of influential Weibo commentators are increasingly opening their own online shops or promoting products.
Meanwhile, hard on the heels of the WebHouse announcement, priceline announced that Perfect Yardsale Inc., another separate priceline.com licensee that offered used merchandise to consumers on the priceline.com web site, has ceased operations. Perfect Yardsale, in operation for less than a year, has a small base of business. Between WebHouse and Perfect Yardsale, Priceline received $4.3 million in the 2nd quarter of this year. Priceline says it is reassessing the costs of providing service to those two companies to determine what expense savings might result. After the two developments today, Priceline stated: "Priceline.com continues to be one of the strongest brands in e-commerce and intends to focus on its core travel, financial services, telecommunications and auto businesses. The company intends to continue to extend its business model into new areas such as business-to-business and will support its various international initiatives. The company expects to report approximately $125 million in cash and short-term investments as of September 30 and has generated significant positive gross margins on its core businesses."