ICC-WTO SMALL BUSINESS CHAMPIONS INITIATIVE
The winning video was submitted by "Zedi", a small business in Ghana specialising in women's and men's fashion.
The founder of Zedi, Juliet Ajaab, explains in the video how she has harnessed new technologies to help her company grow. Using social media has allowed her to significantly increase the company's client base and to reach out to markets outside of Ghana while educational resources on the internet have helped her to improve her skills in key areas, such as advertising and customer services. She also outlines how cloud storage has transformed her way of working, allowing her to instantly share photos of her latest creations with fashion houses around the world. "The internet has impacted me in so many ways and has helped my business grow exponentially," she says. The video can be viewed here.
The two runners-up are My Nametags, a UK-based small business that sells multi-purpose nametags, and the Deering Banjo Co., based in the United States, which produces musical instruments. Their videos can be viewed here and here.
The winner and runners-up win a trip to a master class at Google in digital skills tailored to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), the cost of which will be covered by Google.
The announcement of the winners was made at a Business Forum held in the margins of the WTO's 11th Ministerial Conference in Buenos Aires.
WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo said: "We were delighted by the level of participation in the video competition. We received so many compelling stories of how internet technologies are changing the trade landscape for MSMEs, helping them overcome obstacles and empowering them to become global traders. We thank all the participants for sharing their stories with us. We are sure they will be a source of inspiration to other MSMEs around the world. And, of course, I must congratulate Google on coming up with this initiative and on becoming our first Small Business Champion."
DG Azevêdo and SG Danilovich present the Small Business Champions Trophy to Google's Head of Global Trade Policy, David Weller.
ICC Secretary General John Danilovich said: “Google’s video challenge has given a voice to small businesses from around the world and powerfully demonstrates how the internet is changing trade as we know it. I extend my congratulations to Google for the leading role they have taken in our ICC-WTO Small Business Champions initiative and to the winners of the video competition for sharing their remarkable stories.
“As greater connectivity unlocks new economic opportunities for MSMEs — especially in developing and emerging markets — policymakers should seize the moment at MC11 to foster policies that can boost internet-led trade for the benefit of all.”
The competition, launched in September 2017, invited MSMEs to share their stories, through a short video, about how they have used internet technologies to participate in trade. Numerous videos from around the world were submitted, showing how MSMEs are using these new technologies to trade in sectors ranging from flower selling in Kenya to marketing services in Spain and photographic services in Ghana.
The winning videos will be screened at the WTO's Ministerial Conference in Buenos Aires and shared on social media.
The Small Business Champions initiative provides a platform for companies and private sector organizations around the world to propose innovative, practical ideas designed to encourage micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to do business across borders. The initiative was launched in August 2017. Proposals can be submitted until 31 December 2017. More here.