Amazon has announced the UK winners of the Amazon Small Business Awards – a new programme to shine a spotlight on three of the most inspiring small British brands selling on Amazon.
Hundreds of UK small businesses were nominated for the awards, with tens of thousands of Amazon customers voting for the winners on Amazon.co.uk. So who are the winners?
Hazel Reynolds, founder of Brighton-based Gamely Games, has created a range of family-friendly card games to help reduce screen time for children. The original games include Randomise – one of the bestselling card games on Amazon. After launching in 2016, Gamely has created a total of five games, including Soundiculous and the brand new Frozen Unicorns. By Christmas, Gamely will have sold more than 100,000 units on Amazon’s stores to customers across the world. “Winning this public vote and this incredible prize feels amazing. We are excited to work closely with the Amazon team to take our growth to the next level and to help more families to put down their screens and spend more quality time laughing together,” said Hazel.
Naissance founder Jem Skelding set up health and beauty brand Naissance in his bedroom in 2005, selling a collection of ethical, sustainable and organic beauty products. He now sells to customers in 90 countries, with packaging in five languages. Commenting on the award, Jem said: “Everyone in the team at Naissance is focussed on giving our customers a great experience wherever they are in the world - it’s something that we talk about on a daily basis. Winning Amazon’s Exporting Small Business of the Year is a huge reward for that effort and the whole team is very proud to have been recognised by our customers.”
Disposable Green create environmentally-friendly tableware, straws and takeaway solutions that reduce dependence on plastic. The company, which is based in Ruislip, Middlesex, offers a vast range of 100% natural and home compostable products made from naturally fallen Areca palm leaves. Co-founder Santosh Gandhi, said: “Winning the Amazon Small Innovative Business of the Year Award has supercharged the whole team at Disposable Green. This is such a great opportunity and will help bring the business and our products to a whole new customer base.”
“We are incredibly proud that these inspiring businesses have chosen to sell and grow by selling on Amazon,” says Simon Donegan, Head of UK Seller Services, Amazon. “The three winners exemplifying what small business success looks like – customer obsession and dedication to offering the best available products at great prices for our customers all over the world.”
The three winning businesses will receive a prize package including six months of dedicated account management, £10,000 of Amazon advertising credit, and a trip to Amazon’s Seattle head office to meet senior business leaders. There they will learn more about the tools and services Amazon provides to help sellers grow and scale their businesses through 1-2-1 training.
Since opening its sites to smaller, independent sellers nearly 20 years ago, Amazon has been a growth engine for millions of small businesses around the world. In 2000, three per cent of physical gross merchandise sales on Amazon came from third-party businesses. By 2018 this increased to 58 per cent, following years of investment in technology, infrastructure and selling tools to help them grow their business. Tens of thousands of UK-based small businesses now sell their products on Amazon’s global sites, helping to support more than 80,000 UK jobs and achieving over £2bn of export sales in 2018 alone.
In June, Amazon launched the Clicks and Mortar pilot programme to help small businesses grow on both the high street and online. Over the course of the pilot programme, more than 100 small online brands will be given the opportunity to test physical retail for the first time in pop-up shops around the country. Amazon is also helping create over 150 full-time apprenticeships in small online businesses through a £1 million SME Apprenticeship Fund, while the Amazon Academy training programme provides free digital training to help UK brands to grow their sales and boost exports.