eLuxury.com founder and company president Paul Saunders was in Washington D.C. recently to meet with lawmakers to discuss the challenges and opportunities for e-businesses in the ever-expanding global digital economy. He spent much of his time in D.C. on Capitol Hill.
Saunders was there to advocate on behalf of third party sellers on Amazon.com. eLuxury has been a seller on Amazon since 2013 and has utilized Amazon’s enormous reach across the entire world to grow his company into what it is today.
Saunders’ visit came shortly after of the launch of the bipartisan Digital Trade Caucus by Reps. Suzan DelBene (WA-01) and Erik Paulsen (MN-03) and the growing discussion on Capitol Hill about how U.S. trade policy can affect business of all sizes, from eLuxury.com to Amazon.com. Rep. DelBene said in a statement that the purpose of the Digital Trade Caucus is to create "forward-looking policies so U.S. small businesses can fully harness the power of the Internet by reaching new markets and customers around the world.”
A release from Rep. Paulsen indicates that the $159 billion trade surplus in digitally-deliverable services is “responsible for 7.1 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) and nearly 6.7 million American jobs.”
In that statement Paulsen also says that, “This new bipartisan caucus will ensure continued American leadership in the digital economy by promoting trade policies that harness the power of the Internet and technology to reach new customers around the world.”
After the announcement of the caucus, the Internet Association and the Information Technology Industry Council issued a joint statement expressing their gratitude to the co-chairs of the caucus. Their statement noted that both organizations were “thrilled that members of Congress recognize the importance of digital trade for the U.S. economy. This caucus will be a great opportunity to convene, discuss and inform on these issues.”
Much discussion on this subject has been ignited due to the launch of the Digital Trade Caucus, which is helping to spark a long overdue conversation on Capitol Hill about updating our trade policies and regulations in order to allow American companies to better compete in the globalized digital economy.
Saunders says that the enormous and rapid growth of e-commerce has outpaced the creation of relevant legislation.
“The internet is changing business and commerce faster than regulation and legislation can evolve accordingly. For example, NAFTA was signed in January of 1994. Amazon was not even founded until later that year in July of 1994,” say Saunders.
In addition to meeting with the Digital Trade Caucus, Saunders met with Rep. Larry Bucshon and Sen. Todd Young, both of Indiana, to explain how Amazon has been instrumental in helping eluxury.com reach customers throughout the world.
“This was a great opportunity to speak with our nation’s leadership about the impact marketplaces like Amazon are having on the American economy and, in our case, middle America businesses. In part, because of the opportunities afforded to us by the Internet and Amazon, we’ve been able to scale our business to the point of selling and shipping our product worldwide,” said Saunders.
Saunders hopes that, by helping our lawmakers to better understand the digital landscape that he has built his company on, Washington can assist in bringing American small business to the front door and living rooms of customers across the globe in a way that was never possible before.