We’re really happy to welcome over 200 small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) and authors to our Amazon Academy in London today to learn more about how to become a global-selling business, scale your business through cloud computing, and publish your book using Amazon.

We’re holding the event in Amazon’s Fashion Photography Studio in Hoxton in partnership with Enterprise Nation and the Guardian Small Business Network with a mix of high-profile speakers, panel discussions about issues facing SMEs, and practical ‘how-to’ workshops for getting SMEs to go digital.

“Small businesses in London contribute £400 billion to the UK economy, I am all for supporting small businesses and City Hall is here to help. Thank you to Amazon for sharing the vision and for the work you are here to do today at the Academy.”
Rajesh Agrawal, London Deputy Mayor for Business

This morning, we heard from Emma Jones MBE, founder of Enterprise Nation, an organisation that represents over 70,000 entrepreneurs from around the country.

Speaking at the event, she called on the Government to give a strong signal of support to British small businesses: "Small businesses are the lifeblood of the economy. With the Autumn Statement today, we're hoping there will be some reassurance at least that the Government is taking their needs into consideration, and the billon pound broadband investment is welcome news. At Enterprise Nation we see people every day who are running a global business from their kitchen table. They are doing it by harnessing the digital world and websites such as Amazon are doing a great job supporting them as they build and grow their businesses."

Welcoming all the delegates, our UK Country Manager, Doug Gurr, revealed new export figures that showed UK-based businesses selling on Amazon are expected to achieve export sales of more than £1.8 billion in 2016 (up 29% year-on-year) and that more than 60% of the tens of thousands of UK SMEs selling on Amazon are now exporting to customers around the world.

The Deputy Mayor for Business, Rajesh Agrawal, closed the morning’s speeches saying that London was a city where you can achieve what you aim for, that talented people from around the world come to London to set up businesses, and that London will remain the best place in the world for business and entrepreneurs.

Closing his address, the Deputy Mayor for Business said: "Small businesses in London contribute £400bn to the UK economy, I am all for supporting small businesses and City Hall is here to help. Thank you to Amazon for sharing the vision and for the work you are here to do today at the Academy."

Attendees are now heading into workshops for the afternoon to get practical advice on using Amazon’s services. Learn more about the afternoon sessions here: https://www.enterprisenation.com/amazon-academy.