AWS Equity Equivalent Investment Program

Get the support and resources you need to build your startup


Fostering Diversity and Inclusion in the South African AWS Partner Ecosystem

Amazon’s mission is to be earth’s most customer-centric company. We foster diversity and inclusion globally and look for ways to amplify underrepresented voices and empower diverse communities.

The Amazon Web Services Equity Equivalent Investment Program (AWS EEIP) is an 18-24-month enablement and acceleration program for South African Black-Owned small and medium enterprises (SMEs) who want to build their AWS business and grow as partners in the Amazon Partner Network (APN).

We recognize the challenges that SMEs have in accessing low-cost funding, accessing markets and connecting with buyers, building networks and developing and enabling their people. Whether you are new to cloud or need help accelerating your AWS partner journey, the AWS EEIP offers a range of benefits to help you grow your business, enable your team and become a Validated partner in the AWS Partner Network (APN).

Minimum Eligibility Criteria

  • SMEs must be 100% Black-owned and meet all three Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) ownership criteria (i.e., economic interest, voting rights and net-value points) at the date of application and if selected—throughout their participation in the program.
  • SMEs must hold a valid Level 1 B-BBEE Certificate or Affidavit at the date of application and, if selected—throughout their participation in the program.
  • SMEs must be Exempted Micro Enterprises (EMEs) or Qualifying Small Enterprises (QSEs) at the date of application.

AWS Partner Network

About the AWS Partner Network

The AWS Partner Network (APN) is a global community of partners that leverages programs, expertise, and resources to build, market, and sell customer offerings.

This diverse network features 100,000 partners from more than 150 countries. As an AWS Partner, you are uniquely positioned to help customers take full advantage of all that AWS has to offer and accelerate their journey to the cloud. Together, partners and AWS can provide innovative solutions, solve technical challenges, win deals, and deliver value to our mutual customers.

Why become an AWS Partner?

Innovate, expand your customer reach, and grow your business with technical, marketing, and funding resources from AWS. Together, partners and AWS can provide innovative solutions, solve technical challenges, win deals, and deliver value to our mutual customers.


Leverage the latest AWS technologies to experiment, build, and deliver differentiated customer offerings.

Customer Reach

Take advantage of the global reach, scalability, expertise, and robustness of AWS to expand your customer base and identify new opportunities.


Engage with AWS to enhance the value of your unique offerings with resources, programs, and benefits that drive greater profitability.


Eligibility Requirements

  • 100% Black Owned — You must be 100% Black-owned as defined in the ICT Sector B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice. You must meet all three B-BBEE ownership criteria, i.e., economic interest, voting rights and net-value points at the date of application.
  • Valid Level 1 B-BBEE Certificate/Affidavit — You must have a valid Level 1 B-BBEE Contributor certificate or Affidavit at the date of application.
  • Exempted Micro-Enterprise or Qualifying Small Enterprise — your turnover must not exceed R50m per year at the date of application.
  • Founders Experience —the majority of your economic interest and voting rights (at least 51%) must be held by a founder who has a minimum of ten-years of professional work experience, including experience in leading and growing teams [this requirement does not apply to teams who have been running their startup full-time for at least 24 months].
  • Core Team in Place in place — You should have an operations manager and technical lead in place. The operations manager, technical lead and all founders must be able to transition to full-time employment in the business from the program start date.

The AWS EEIP is not open to applicants who have already reached the Validated stage for any APN Partner Path. Register on the APN here.


Training and Certification

  • AWS Skill Builder Subscriptions
  • AWS Classroom Training
  • AWS Foundational Certification Vouchers
  • AWS Associate Certification Exam Vouchers
  • AWS Professional Certification Exam Vouchers
  • AWS Specialty Certification Exam Vouchers
  • Scrum Certification Training and Exam Fee
  • FinOps Certified Practitioner Course and Exam Fee


  • 1:1 Consultant Led Product Workshop
  • 1:1 Consultant Led Business Transformation Workshop
  • 1:1 Weekly Technical Support Office Hours
  • Many Technical Enablement Workshops


  • Headcount Funding to subsidize your compensation costs as your grow  your team
  • Office Subsidy 
  • Hardware Benefit
  • Administration Subsidy


  • Fully Funded APN Program fee upon meeting APN Software Path Validation Requirements
  • Market Development Funds
  • AWS Credits to help cover your AWS service usage

What our AWS Partners say

Key Dates

Applications open

 March 20th 2024

Applications close

 April 17th 2024

  • Applicant Briefing Q&A Session (Optional): Monday April 8th 2024 at 12h00