Amazon Business is a global procurement solution now used by more than five million business customers, ranging from sole proprietors to multinational enterprises with tens of thousands of employees on a single account.
Since launching in the U.S. in 2015, we have expanded to eight additional countries including the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, Canada and India – and reached $25 billion in worldwide annualised sales, more than half of which are from selling partners.
In the UK, two of our fastest-growing customer segments are enterprise customers and public entities and we serve more than 50% of FTSE 100 companies. In addition, we serve all of the 15 largest universities, 13 of the 15 biggest cities and six of the largest 15 hospitals across the UK, as well as many other public entities. Multinational enterprises from all industries – including retail, healthcare and automotive – purchase from our selection of hundreds of millions of products in categories such as office, IT, cleaning products, PPE and professional medical supplies.
In the UK, there are millions of items with an available business discount giving customers more value for their money. Shahzad Saleem, Chief Procurement Officer at Capita, was looking to embrace a digital platform that better served their customers, while maintaining cost competitiveness. Introducing Amazon Business for Capita’s tail spend IT peripherals reduced their procurement costs by over £225,000 within the first six months. Shahzad also managed to save 32% on 12,800 headsets compared to their distributor network – and was able to cut purchasing time by 82%.
Helping multinational enterprises fast-track digital change
Amazon Business offers a set of features that suit the needs of multinational enterprises, such as business-only pricing and selection, single or multi-user business accounts, Business Prime, approval workflow, purchasing system integrations, payment solutions, dedicated customer support, to name a few.
One of those customers, Stewart Dalton, EMEA Senior Procurement Manager, AECOM, said: “By lodging a single payment card and using a punchout catalogue to Amazon Business, the time spent placing orders and reconciling invoices has been reduced by over 70%. One of the biggest benefits was the familiarity of Amazon, and we’re excited to be building a better procurement process.”
Since enterprise customers often utilise third-party solutions, including Enterprise Resource Planning systems such as SAP, and Spend Management systems like Coupa and Ariba, Amazon Business integrates directly into over one hundred of these solutions. This helps to enable real time access to millions of products, streamline expense management processes, and digitise purchase orders and invoices – lowering the overall cost of operations.
Supporting selling partners to thrive on Amazon Business
Amazon Business selling partners are independent businesses selling through our stores. They are just as much a part of our customer base as the end buyers and we are focused on helping them accelerate their business growth. Historically, small and medium sized businesses have struggled to sell their products to multinational enterprises, often because they lack the resources to reach them. What makes Amazon Business unique is that we enable our selling partners to reach new business buyers such as multinational enterprises, universities, government agencies and healthcare organisations. In fact, enterprise customers in the UK have increased their spending by more than 50% year-over-year with selling partners.
We help with infrastructure, personnel, tools and services. As a company, Amazon spends billions of dollars every year to help small- and medium-sized businesses around the globe succeed. These selling partners range from manufacturers of quality consumer electronics and IT equipment, independent office supply resellers and international online bookstores, to family-owned businesses selling appliances for the home and office.
Darren Wilson is just one of the business owners to benefit, as Director of DKW IT Consultancy Services: “Our experience with Amazon Business has been a great journey – the volume of sales we are receiving through Amazon is much greater compared with our previous channels. We have been able to leverage an established B2B customer base on Amazon Business and we realised that adding business-relevant products bring a significant increase in our revenue.”
“We were especially pleased to get orders not just from large entities but also from business customers of all types and sizes which grew our B2B segment to almost 50% of our total sales,” Darren adds.
Supporting public sector procurement
Similarly, we’ve compiled our best resources to also help public sector customers across the UK with their digital procurement efforts from hospitals, to healthcare, childcare and schools to government organisations. In addition, Amazon Business helps public entities achieve their spending requirements with small to medium-size businesses.
In the UK alone, an increasing number of public sector customers are purchasing items from selling partners including education supplies, business books, site and safety equipment, office supplies, IT equipment, and many more. One of our customers in the public sector, Kyush Modasia, Director Finance for Academies Enterprise Trust, said: “We had an operational model that was equivalent to 58 different entities all working in silo. There was a drastic need to improve system processes that were central to our new operational model. Centralisation helped us bring all our academies together in one place – so that finance operated as one function. This was key to improving our financial reporting.”
Also, during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, Amazon Business helped to get critical medical supplies and PPE – such as digital thermometers, ventilators, facemasks and sanitisers – to nearly 3,000 healthcare and government organisations in Europe.
Driving sustainability forward
Amazon is committed to building a sustainable business for our customers and the planet. We co-founded the Climate Pledge in 2019, committing Amazon to be net-zero carbon across all our businesses by 2040 — a decade ahead of the Paris Agreement’s goal of 2050.
We help Amazon Business Customers procure more sustainably. As part of the Climate Pledge Friendly programme, they can discover and purchase a growing selection of business-relevant items such as paper towels, printer paper, HDMI cables, face masks, monitors, and laptops that are already certified with recognised labels such as the Energy Star, EPEAT and Compact by Design.
Compact by Design is a new externally validated certification created by Amazon – to identify products which are designed with less air and water, so they are more efficient to ship.
The Climate Pledge Friendly programme features tens of thousands of items and we add more selection every day, allowing procurement leaders to focus on digital transformation while acting sustainably.
Looking ahead, we continue listening to feedback from customers and selling partners. We are obsessed with innovating on their behalf to deliver what they need to be successful in meeting the demands of the future workplace. We are excited about what we have accomplished over the last six years and look forward to what lies ahead.