Amazon has opened registrations for its first Amazon Academy of 2018, taking place on Tuesday 17th April at the SEC Centre, Glasgow. Amazon also today revealed that UK SMEs selling on its Marketplace achieved record export sales of £2.3 billion last year, whilst more than 85,000 people are employed in the UK to run the sales activities of businesses selling on Amazon Marketplace.
Run in association with Enterprise Nation, the Amazon Academy programme is a series of free events across the UK which provide hands-on, practical advice to help SMEs succeed in the digital economy, in particular by growing their export sales. This year there will be Amazon Academies in Glasgow, Newcastle and Cardiff, following previous events in London, Manchester, Edinburgh and Birmingham which were attended by more than 1,200 SMEs and entrepreneurs. The Amazon Academy forms parts of the company’s ongoing efforts to help SMEs from across the UK grow their businesses, in particular by boosting their e-commerce and export sales.
The Rt Hon Liam Fox MP, Secretary of State International Trade, said:
“The growth in SME exports on sites such as Amazon shows what can be achieved, and I welcome the company’s commitments to help more small companies go digital so they can grow their businesses and create jobs up and down the country.”
Amazon offers a suite of support tools to help businesses export their products and services, including providing global delivery and distribution, managing customer services in the local language and translating hundreds of millions of product listings each year on behalf of smaller businesses. As a result, six in ten UK-based businesses selling on Amazon Marketplace now export abroad, with half of all sales on Amazon’s global sites coming from smaller, independent businesses.
“We are seeing a record number of British SMEs selling their products across Europe, North America, Japan, China and India, opening themselves to millions of additional potential customers through the power of the internet,” said Doug Gurr, UK Country Manager, Amazon. “Through programmes like the Amazon Academy, we want to help small businesses grow their revenue, increase their productivity and boost exports, to help build a stronger economy and create more jobs in the UK.”
Amazon also today announced new research by economics consultancy Keystone Strategy which found that independent British businesses employ more than 85,000 people in the UK to run their sales activities on Amazon Marketplace, including:
- Over 25,000 jobs in London and the South East
- Over 10,000 jobs in the North West of England
- Over 5,000 jobs in the East of England
- Over 5,000 jobs in Yorkshire and the Humber
- Over 5,000 jobs in the West Midlands
- Over 3,000 jobs in Wales
- Over 3,000 jobs in Scotland
- Over 2,000 jobs in the North East of England
- Over 1,000 jobs in Northern Ireland
“Websites like Amazon are a great way for British SMEs to break into overseas markets, and that is why we are looking forward to bringing Amazon Academies to new cities across the UK as we continue on our mission to help SMEs grow their business online,” said Emma Jones MBE, Founder, Enterprise Nation which provides expert advice and support for over 70,000 of Britain’s SMEs. “We want to see more SMEs take their first step into exporting by utilising the available tools and guidance from companies like Amazon, so that these businesses can reach their potential by going global.”
One significant exporter on Amazon Marketplace is Sugru, a start-up from East London who produce a mouldable glue to help fix almost anything. Sales on Amazon continue to grow by more than 100% every year, reaching millions of customers in seven countries around the world.
“From launching our business in the UK, we’ve now expanded to sell through Amazon across seven countries, and now Amazon in the U.S. is our single largest customer,” said Sugru’s founder, Jane Ni Dhulchaointigh. “With more than two million customers globally, we look forward to boosting our export sales even further in 2017.”