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B1 Business Preliminary

B1 Business Preliminary, formerly known as Cambridge English: Business Preliminary (BEC Preliminary), is one of our Cambridge English Qualifications. It helps you to get the practical language skills you need to start doing business in English.


With a B1 Business Preliminary qualification, you show employers that you have a good knowledge of English for practical, everyday use in business.

There are three Cambridge English Qualifications for business. Each one is targeted at a different level and B1 Business Preliminary is the first of these exams. The content for each exam is based on everyday work and business tasks and is designed to develop your business English skills.

Key facts

CEFR level: B1 What's this?

Scale score: 140–159  What’s this?

Test format: Computer or paper-based

No. of papers: 3

Exam length: About 2 hours 20 minutes

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A B1 Business Preliminary certificate shows that you can:
  • talk about business subjects
  • understand charts and graphs
  • write a short business email
  • follow short telephone conversations.
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Reasons to choose B1 Business Preliminary:
  • Succeed in business-related studies with English language skills you can prove.
  • Improve your career opportunities – get the English language skills you need to be successful.
  • Accepted globally by top international companies like Procter & Gamble, HSBC and AstraZeneca, as well as education institutions and business schools.