After going live in the US this summer, Amazon has today brought its Launchpad program to the UK. Appearing sans fanfare on the UK portal, Launchpad is a dedicated storefront specifically showcasing the products of early stage companies. That said, the initial catalogue features some relatively well-known brands, such as Sphero, Withings, Pebble, Elgato, Misfit and new smartphone player Wileyfox, though it's not limited to products in the technology realm. The idea behind Launchpad is that startups can use the program -- and Amazon's delivery expertise -- to get their products to customers without having to become logistics experts themselves.Exposure plays a part, too, with Launchpad partners afforded richer product listings that allow them to introduce their company and wares. Amazon will work with crowdfunding platforms, venture capitalists and startup accelerators to build out the storefront; and in the US at least, businesses that may still be months away from delivering a final product are encouraged to apply for inclusion, so monetising that slick new invention can begin as soon as it hits Amazon's warehouse.
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