Skype and eBay ( EBAY) will part ways, according to the online auction shop, which plans to spin off the Internet calling business in an IPO next year.

"It's clear that Skype has limited synergies with eBay and PayPal," eBay chief John Donahoe said in a press release Tuesday. "We believe operating Skype as a stand-alone publicly traded company is the best path for maximizing its potential."

After eBay made its $2.4 billion acquisition of Skype in 2005, it soon became clear that the free international calling specialist wasn't necessarily a sensible fit in eBay's big auction picture. In 2007, eBay wrote off $1.4 billion of its Skype investment.

According to eBay, Skype had sales of $551 million in 2008, up 44% from 2007. The company also says it expects Skype revenue to reach $1 billion in two years.

The move to end its run with Skype comes a day after eBay was hit with a sell rating from Collins Stewart analyst Sandeep Aggarwal, who worried that there were no signs of "fundamental improvement" to support the stock's recent increase.

In particular, Aggarwal argued that eBay's core auction business is in decline, this is causing both a loss of market share and an erosion of its margins.

In January, Donahoe noted that Skype wasn't necessarily a key to his company's future. "We are now confident that the synergies between Skype and the other parts of our portfolio are minimal. So, we are going to continue to run and operate the business," Donahoe told analysts on an earnings conference call.

eBay shares rose 62 cents, or 4%, to $15.00 in after-hours trading Tuesday.