Last week, eBay Inc. participated in an event sponsored by the European Small Business Alliance (ESBA), which focused on the ways in which small and medium-sized enterprises have been the backbone of job creation for Europe in the last few years. “Micro-Business: Your Favorite Employer” joined together key stakeholders and entrepreneurs to discuss and debate ways to shift the focus to micro-businesses, defined as those with ten employees or less.
eBay Powerseller Adam Mackay (pictured) participated in a panel with one other online entrepreneur from Ireland. Adam, who is director at Blue Water Sports Limited, painted a vivid picture of the strategies the scuba and water sports equipment company has employed to grow, become successful and ultimately create employment for seven individuals. Both entrepreneurs not only discussed micro-businesses as a source of job creation, but also focused much of their attention on the way Ecommerce has helped them grow their business in a sustainable way.
Discussion ultimately turned to the way legislative and regulatory barriers can make it at times difficult for businesses to comply and continue to grow. In particular, Adam commented on the complexity involved in taking on employees and the way in which this may inadvertently deter micro-businesses from hiring. VAT was also a topic of discussion, as both entrepreneurs explained to policy makers in the room the hurdles of complying with VAT legislation and shared their ideas on how the system could be simplified.
Event highlights included an offline Twitter feed, through which participants could share comments during the event, as well as Dutch entrepreneur “Modelminds”, who created a visual representation of the event. A keynote speech by a member of Antonio Tajani’s cabinet (European Commission VP for Industry and Enterprise), highlighted the way Internet and Ecommerce have provided a tremendous opportunity for micro-businesses during the economic crisis and truly have the ability to pull Europe out of this recession.