Monthly Archives: April 2013

eBay Inc Blog Cindy Sorley Story

EBAY: STITCHING THE FAMILY TOGETHER  Taken for eBay Blog at eBay Inc … So excited to be a part of this.


When I am teaching eBay classes to stay at home moms, I always seem to get asked the same question, “Why eBay?” I tell them that after years of having a brick and mortar specialty needlework store where customers would come in and work on their projects, socialize and bring their lunch, I wanted a place where there was a sense of a community and I found it on eBay.


My husband and I were shocked to find out around our 19th Anniversary that we would be blessed with another child. My husband Jim, an airline pilot, and I decided our son Thomas would go to work with me at the store. At 4 days old, he made his debut at Stitchery X-Press and became the store mascot for over three years. As he grew older, it became more unmanageable as he pulled linens off shelves and tried to run our hemstitching machine. Some big decisions needed to be made when every time a customer opened the door little Thomas would run for the parking lot and street.

We received notice that our already high rent would be going up, so I needed to make a quick decision if we were going to stay open or close. I wanted to give eBay a try by selling my existing inventory before having a clearance sale. I had been a buyer on eBay for a number of years so I took the selling plunge and jumped right in. It was surprising how fast bids came in right after listing them.

Within a month my eBay sales were more than my physical store. eBay became a logical choice to sell my inventory. It gave me an opportunity to be at home and have my own work hours instead of being tied to the shop 24/7, six days a week. I had already had the username BubbaCanDance as a buyer from the country music group Shenandoah’s hit song (whom I worked for). When it came time to open an eBay store I decided on Stitchery X-Press, our established name since 1982. After a few months I was going to change my eBay ID to the store name but my customers said no. Seven years later, Stitchery X-Press is one of the largest needlework stores on eBay with customers from all over the world.


I knew I needed more space and looked into renting. One of the reasons I closed the store was to stay at home so we decided to build a warehouse and office in the back yard. We now walk a few feet to work each day.

eBay is part of our family and I feel at home. eBay has allowed me to home school Thomas who has become part of the business team. He is the shipping manager and makes sure all packages get the labels on them. Our other son Steven delivers all packages daily to the post office. Steven is headed to join the Marines to be a pilot next year (we hope) and Thomas is trying to figure out how to get his driver’s license by age 11 to take over that job. Jim will move into a job here when he retires from the airlines soon.


My journey with eBay continues to grow as do the personal relationships that cultivate along the way. One of my favorite sayings is “like what you do, do what you like!” This is who I am and it has shaped the fabric of our family business! I am eBay!

Russia Postal Delays April 2013

Delays and disruption as Russian Post struggles with e-commerce

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

Russian Post is contending with tons of backlogged international mail – mostly e-commerce parcels – in Moscow after problems with staffing levels in the Russian customs service.

An embargo on inbound international mail has been declared from 9th to the 14th April at Sheremetyevo International Airport with reports of 500 tons of mail sitting waiting to get through customs.

Growth in the volume of mail sent to Russia from abroad has doubled in the last three years, while at the same time domestic mail volumes have grown only 15%. Internet shopping accounts for about 70% of Russian Post’s parcel volumes.

Russian Post itself has been struggling with its own infrastructure, and last year urged major foreign posts to consider sending inbound Russian mail to specific regional airports, rather than via Moscow, to avoid swamping the Russian capital’s processing facilities.

However, the latest problem has seen the Post suggesting that customs officials are as much to blame as the problems in the postal network, particularly with a 20% cut to civil service staffing levels in 2013 as ordered by the previous Russian President, Dmitry Medvedev.

Russian Post director general Alexander Kiselev has now written to the Federal Customs Service calling for improvements.

Foreign postal operators have been warning their customer of likely delays, while looking for alternative routes for particularly urgent items.

bpost international, the cross-border mail division of Belgium’s bpost, said that with Domodedovo International Airport also closed to international mail it was routing some mail and express items through Turkish Airlines, with some letter mail going through bpost UK.

Russian Post is facing considerable domestic network problems as well, and as of today more than 11,000 people have signed an online petition at calling on President Vladimir Putin to deal with the mail network.

The petition complains that some people are having to wait up to six months for a parcel to be delivered.


The Post organized an open forum last week to discuss the problems it is having keeping up with the distance selling market, discussing the issues with politicians, experts and representatives of public organisations.

Russian Post has been calling for state assistance for months to help modernise its aging processing infrastructure.

The company said its forum had come to the conclusion that a concerted effort is needed from both government and business to address the logistics problems in Russian e-commerce and distance selling.

But without government support, Russian Post said strategic development of the business was “impossible”.

Alexander Timofeev, director of production processes, said the company was in need of “serious investment” to provide the desired level of service quality and tap the potential for Russia’s distance-selling market.

He said: “60% of our existing infrastructure is in need of replacement and cannot provide quality service for the avalanche flow of parcels. And it will inevitably become a brake on the further development of distance selling in Russia if we do not solve this problem.”

Alexei Mitrofanov, the chairman of the State Duma committee on information policy, information technology and communications, said the outdated infrastructure and technology and high reliance on manual labour at Russian Post was constraining the distance-selling industry.

“This concerns a huge industry that employs hundreds of thousands of people and we as a legislator take this legislation very seriously,” he insisted.

OZON Holdings, the ecommerce firm dubbed the “Amazon of Russia”, spoke at the forum to state that dealing with Russia’s distance-selling logistics problem cannot be solved by simply upgrading Russian Post’s creaking network.

Nina Mogilev, the director of service delivery at OZON Holdings, said: “We are interested in the development of mail in Russia, as we see this as important in the future development and expansion of our business throughout the country.

“But to build an affordable, effective and efficient system for the delivery of goods to the population of such a great country it is not enough to just update the fleet of Russian Post or add an automated sorting system in order to work effectively. You need a strategic interation between all the participants in this process – the rapidly growing e-commerce sector and also government, transportation and logistics companies,” said the OZON director, whose company has 11m registered users and makes $500m (USD) a year in sales.