Representatives of local firms joined Simon Hughes MP and Liberal Democrat councillors last month for a round-table discussion about jobs and business in Southwark.
The event, which was hosted by PwC at its offices on the More London estate was attended by a range of local employers including Monmouth Coffee, Bacon's College and Neal's Yard Dairy.
"Local businesses seem to be cautiously optimistic about the future," said Simon Hughes MP.
"The majority said they could see signs the economy is picking up, which is good news, but there is certainly no room for complacency."
"Many of them were very keen to help create more jobs and apprenticeships in the area, which would be a welcome boost for everyone."
Cllr Anood Al-Samerai, leader of Southwark's Lib Dem group, said: "This was a great chance to talk to local firms face-to-face and find out exactly what they think about a whole range of issues.
"We also had some really interesting ideas put forward about how to make things easier for businesses in the area, which we will now be looking at in more detail."