Find out about Trade Me’s history and the most popular listings of all time.
Thousands of Kiwis visit Trade Me every day to get things done – from searching for their next home, car, or career to running their own business or hunting for a bargain. Find out about Trade Me’s history and the most popular listings of all time.
Trade Me’s history
We’ve been a part of Kiwis’ lives since opening our virtual doors in March 1999.
Trade Me’s founder: It all started with Sam Morgan’s hunt for a heater
The story goes that a young computer consultant named Sam Morgan started Trade Me after a frustrating experience buying a heater for his chilly Wellington flat. Sam was fed up with other websites that didn't cater well to Kiwis, and he reckoned he could offer something better.
At the time, the concept was pretty strange – buying something you’d never seen, from someone you’d never met. In the early 2000s, viewing a car, job or property online was a foreign concept to most New Zealanders. Now it’s the norm.
A lot has changed over the past 20 years.
Two decades later
In just over two decades, Trade Me has moved from being a site for finding a secondhand bargain to the place you go to find your first home, launch a new business, purchase a car or take the next step in your career.
Today, Trade Me is visited 1.9 million times every day by an average of 650,000 Kiwis. There are more than 9 million listings onsite at any one time, and we employ more than 500 people across Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.
What’s next for Trade Me?
Technology is moving rapidly, and advances in the areas of voice search, artificial intelligence, machine learning and more create more opportunities for us to make cool things that help Kiwis get things done.
Vision & values
Thousands of Kiwis visit Trade Me every day. These are our vision and values we use to guide the work we do.
Every day Trade Me is visited 1.9 million times by an average of 650,000 Kiwis. We understand that our future depends on continuing to be relevant, useful, trusted and offering value to our members.
Trade Me vision
Our vision is to be the place 'Where Kiwis look first'.
We want to be the first place that Kiwis look when searching for a job, a rental property, their new house, or new car. The first place Kiwis want to work and where they go first to buy and sell new and used items.
Trade Me values
Alongside our vision, we have four values that guide our behaviour and sum up what’s important to us.
To help us keep our values front and centre, each one is represented by an avatar. This is our Values Squad – Aroha, Ed, Tem, and Richie.