Amazon launch pad for local companies

About 100 small Australian companies and entrepreneurs are celebrating winning a commercial lottery to get places on a new online local store being trialled by global marketing giant Amazon.

The companies will get the chance to show their products to a massive online audience opening the way to a huge jump in sales.

 A similar past trial in America by Amazon saw small Australian skin care manufacturer Marlowe increase sales by 500 per cent.

Although online marketing experts are warning that it is too early to start spending any potential profits from additional exposure, the selected companies are delighted by their good fortune.

“I wont lie. I’m a wee bit excited,” a beaming Danny Clayton from swimwear designer Surf Gypsy told Channel 7.

After seven years of striving, Danny says it’s her first big break.

“I have no idea yet what is in store and that’s really exciting for a small business like ours.”

The selected businesses will be featured on a new local store called Amazon Launch Pad and made available to a national audience.

Another company to win a place in the Launch Pad line-up is Lyres, manufacturers of non-alcoholic spirits.

“To be part of Amazon is a massive boost for this company,” said Lyres CEO Mark Livings.

“One of the biggest hurdles for a new brand is getting recognition and building an identity.”

He said the electronic eyes from Amazon customers would be welcomed.

An estimated two thirds of Australia’s online purchases come from overseas countries and the Amazon experiment is to try and reverse that percentage and generate more sales in Australia from local manufacturers.

The widespread optimism shared by the 100 selected companies is balanced to some degree by the lack of detail about the commercial arrangement with Amazon in regard to sales revenue.

Online marketing expert Dr Jason Pallant told Channel 7 there were still considerable unknowns about the deal

“How much will Amazon be taking for providing these services?” he asked.

Danny Clayton said the benefits of being selected for the on line store were incalculable. “The opportunity to have that kind of voice and be on a platform such as Amazon is huge,” she said.