Scottish SMEs and aspiring authors set to benefit from Amazon’s academy

Reach customers through Alexa, Amazon’s cloud-based voice service

Registration has opened for the first Amazon Academy in Scotland, on 23 May at Edinburgh’s EICC. The free one-day event features presentations and workshops with experts and entrepreneurs providing support and guidance for Scottish SMEs wanting to grow their businesses online. It is being run in conjunction with small business network Enterprise Nation, which supports more than 70,000 SMEs across the UK.

Scottish SMEs, start-ups and web developers are invited to attend, where they’ll learn how to use the Internet and technology to boost their revenue and productivity, and grow their exports. Workshops will include how to :

Boost export sales and go global through Amazon Marketplace;

Use cloud computing to be lean, fast and agile through Amazon Web Services;

Bring innovative products to market through Amazon Launchpad

Reach new customers through Alexa, Amazon’s cloud-based voice service

Thousands of local businesses in Scotland are already taking advantage of Amazon’s suite of services to help them reach new global customers, including supporting them with managing currency exchange, local translations and providing global delivery and distribution. As a result, businesses of all sizes can sell globally across Amazon’s eleven websites in seven languages to reach hundreds of millions of customers. Total UK exports by UK businesses through Amazon Marketplace amounted to £1.8bn last year.

“Scotland has a long history of invention, and today that heritage is on full display as a new generation of small businesses are using internet technologies to fuel Scotland’s fast growing digital economy,” said Doug Gurr, Amazon’s UK country manager. “There are big opportunities for Scottish SMEs to grow through e-commerce and exports, and we look forward to bringing together established and aspiring small businesses to discuss how to maximise their success.”  

The event follows the release of the Q1 SME Growth Tracker, a quarterly report by Capital Economics commissioned by Amazon and Enterprise Nation, that tracks the confidence of businesses across the UK. The tracker found that Scottish SMEs are expecting business conditions to improve in the next 12 months, with revenue growth projections of +1.5%, profit growth of +1.0%, and jobs growth of +0.8% in the coming 12 months.

“By developing their digital credentials, Scottish SMEs can stand shoulder to shoulder with businesses around the world. Getting support in digital technology can be a challenge for small businesses but through events like the Amazon Academy, that help is available and accessible for companies who want to expand their horizons and push the boundaries of their trade to a global level,” said Emma Jones, founder of Enterprise Nation.

A dedicated Amazon Academy for authors will also be held on the same day for aspiring and established Scottish writers. Being run in association with the Alliance of Independent Authors, successful independent authors will share tips and guidance on how to use Kindle Direct Publishing – Amazon’s independent publishing programme – to reach a potential global audience of millions.