FORTUNE — Carl Icahn has his sights set on a Silicon Valley giant, and it isn’t Apple (AAPL).
eBay Inc. (EBAY) this afternoon announced that Icahn has nominated two of his employees to its board of directors, and submitted a non-binding proposal to spin PayPal out into a separate business.
Icahn earlier this month acquired a 0.82% stake in eBay, as part of what appears to be his heightened interest in the tech sector (Apple, Dell, etc.). eBay suggested that it has previously considered, and rejected, a PayPal spinout. It also expressed support for its current directors. The company is expected to further address the matter during its previously-scheduled Q4 earnings call today at 5pm ET.
Below is eBay’s statement regarding Icahn’s proposal:
eBay shares are up more than 7% in aftermarket trading. With 0.82% of eBay’s outstanding stock, Icahn would be the company’s 25th largest outside shareholder.
Update: eBay reported fourth quarter earnings for 2013, with company revenues up 13% for the period to $4.5 billion. Of the company’s three business divisions – Marketplaces, Enterprises and Payments – the Payments division, or PayPal, remains the fastest-growing, with revenues climbing 19% to $1.8 billion. (Indeed, CEO John Donahoe has repeatedly said in the past he expects PayPal to surpass Marketplaces, or auction site, within the next three to five years.)
During the earnings call this afternoon, Donahoe spent a significant chunk of time addressing Icahn’s non-binding proposal to spin off PayPal. “You won’t be surprised that this is not a new idea,” Donahoe said. He continued to explain why keeping eBay and PayPal together remains the best strategy. As examples, he pointed out that eBay is directly contributing to PayPal’s rapid user growth at no cost – one-third of PayPal’s 5.2 million new active accounts for the fourth quarter — thanks to increasing integration of PayPal in eBay’s web and mobile services. And roughly 50% of eBay’s profits are being utilized to help fund PayPal’s rapid, continued expansion. Donahoe explained the board remains unified behind keeping the company intact until “these synergies run their course.”
Additional reporting by JP Mangalindan