More than €1 million worth of sales has been generated by a group of small to medium sized Irish businesses taking part in an eBay pilot programme that was launched earlier this year. 

eBay's Retail Expansion Programme was developed to support Irish businesses reach new audiences around the world through its online marketplace.

More than 50 businesses, across industries such as health and beauty, fashion, homeware, sport and music, joined the programme in March.

Many on the pilot programme reported an uplift in overall sales of between five and 20%. One company in Monaghan reported a 50% increase in sales of its musical instruments and accessories.

More than half of businesses had never exported prior to joining. The largest export markets for those on the programme are now the UK, US and Germany. 

eBay Ireland's site lead, Hazel Mitchell, said the programme has given Irish businesses the chance to reach a whole new customer base not just in Ireland, but globally. "We are gearing up to grow and expand the scheme so that more SMEs can benefit," she said.

The Retail Expansion Programme was rolled out in partnership with Enterprise Ireland, the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland and We are Dublin Town.