Online retail major eBay has approved a plan to separate the company’s eBay and PayPal businesses into independent publicly traded companies in 2015.

The plan, subject to customary conditions, is a strategic review of the company’s growth strategies and structure.

Creating two standalone businesses best positions eBay and PayPal to capitalise on their respective growth opportunities in the rapidly changing global commerce and payments landscape, and is the best path for creating sustainable shareholder value, the company said.

eBay president and CEO John Donahoe said: "eBay and PayPal are two great businesses with leading global positions in commerce and payments."

"For more than a decade eBay and PayPal have mutually benefited from being part of one company, creating substantial shareholder value. However, a thorough strategic review with our board shows that keeping eBay and PayPal together beyond 2015 clearly becomes less advantageous to each business strategically and competitively."

eBay board and management team believes that splitting eBay and PayPal on independent paths in 2015 is best for each business and will create additional value for shareholders.

"As independent companies, eBay and PayPal will enjoy added flexibility to pursue new market and partnership opportunities. And we are confident following a thorough assessment of the relationships between eBay and PayPal that operating agreements can maintain synergies going forward."

PayPal, with 152 million active digital wallets, connects people globally, enabling them to easily make payments online. It is available in 203 markets worldwide and is on track to process one billion mobile payments this year alone.

In 2013, PayPal has processed $203bn in total payment volume for its customers.