Supporting consumers and small businesses
We strive to be Earth’s most customer-centric company, and we share the European Commission’s ambition to remove barriers so that consumers and businesses of all sizes can take full advantage of the European single market, both online and offline. Since 2010, we have invested more than €55 billion in Europe, and today we employ over 115,000 people across 15 European countries. These new job opportunities are for people with all types of experience, education and skill levels—from engineers and software developers to those seeking entry-level positions and on-the-job training. Many of these job opportunities are often in areas of Europe with a history of higher unemployment and lower investment.
Increasing innovation is one of the most effective ways to strengthen the single market. Many retailers of all kinds are experimenting and innovating in terms of their product range, formats and the new services they offer customers – from kerbside delivery to click and collect. It’s in the interest of Europe’s consumers that this level of invention continues and that policy continues to enable creativity, while ensuring the same rules apply to all companies.
We want our customers to benefit from constant innovation, selection, choice and price competitiveness, so it is equally important to earn and retain customer trust. We work hard at Amazon across the globe to do that each and every day. We know that trust is hard won and easily lost. Like all retailers, we want to be sure that our customers trust the products they buy from our stores, including from third parties. We have zero tolerance for the sale of counterfeit products, and we invest heavily in combating criminals and counterfeits through innovation and action.
In 2019, this investment in counterfeit, fraud, and abuse prevention globally was $500 million. We have some 8,000 employees dedicated to this work. They develop and deploy leading edge technology and use their varied expertise to help detect bad actors and activity that indicates products offered by a seller might be counterfeit. We work closely with law enforcement through our dedicated Counterfeit Crimes Unit.
We simultaneously invest heavily in tools, services and programs to support the thousands of legitimate European small and medium-sized businesses selling to customers around the world through our stores. In Europe last year, we spent over €2.2 billion on logistics, tools, services, programs, and people to open up new opportunities and support the success of our selling partners. There are now more than 150,000 European businesses selling through our stores that generate tens of billions of Euros in revenues annually and have created hundreds of thousands of jobs.
During the pandemic, we’ve been launching new programs to support small businesses across Europe, providing free training for hundreds of thousands of small businesses through our ‘accelerator’ programs. The wide selection that these sellers bring to our stores means that customers have more choices, and great prices, while independent sellers have access to Amazon customers.
Sellers’ products account for more than 50 per cent of the goods sold in our online stores, and their sales continue to outpace our first-party sales. More than ever, we admire our small business partners’ entrepreneurial spirit and drive to innovate, and we will continue to do everything we can to support them and to protect them and our customers.