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eBay and PayPal to stay in Ireland

eBay and PayPal will continue to have "a big presence" in Ireland after the companies split next year, a spokesman has confirmed.

The online retail giant had previously announced plans to spin off PayPal, its fast-growing payments business, into a publicly-traded company in the second half of 2015.

The companies have plans to boost employee numbers at a Dundalk site to 1,850 by 2018.

An eBay spokesman said the move was good news for both brands and would help the two separate entities to grow.

"PayPal and eBay have a big presence in Ireland and that's set to continue," he added.

eBay chief executive John Donahoe (pictured) previously resisted demands by activist investor Carl Icahn to hive off the service, saying PayPal was integral to eBay's business - and vice versa.

PayPal was founded in the late 1990s and went public in 2002. It was acquired by eBay soon afterward for $1.5bn (€1.18bn), and had 143 million users by the end of last year.