SAN JOSE, CA: Auction website Ebay has asked a number of PR agencies to respond to RFIs, as part of a global benchmarking process that covers both its external and internal comms capabilities.

However, Ebay corporate comms SVP Alan Marks denied speculation that the process, which is being handled by Deloitte Consulting, amounted to a review of its existing PR agencies – which include Edelman in the US, and Shine and Blue Rubicon in the UK.

Marks said that the exercise is part of a global Ebay initiative to “drive best practices and processes across our agency network and our internal communications operations.”

“We do not have agencies under review,” said Marks. “We have sent out a number of requests for information, both within our agency network and outside the network, in order to gain insight, identify best practices and gather global benchmark data.”

Edelman won Ebay’s North American PR account in mid-2009 following a competitive review. The website works with different agencies in local markets worldwide, with Shine and Blue Rubicon handling consumer and corporate, respectively, in the UK.