South Africa’s Sw7, which claims to be Africa’s largest virtual business accelerator, is looking to up the ante of its content and support for thousands of African enterprises by tapping into a formula partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS), the world’s largest cloud solutions provider.
The Johannesburg-based Sw7 helps startups prepare for and find funding, as well as providing business support and board advisory, to assist with off-shore expansion and sale of businesses. It has run numerous cohorts and worked with hundreds of tech businesses.
Having already joined forces with AWS in 2019 to help a pilot group of African business-to-business (B2B) and software-as-a-service (SaaS) businesses scale up their offerings. Co-founder Keith Jones says there is always more to do to turn individual African dreams into economic global realities.
“In the past we were working arms-length with AWS – they provided some support and we got on with it. This time we are mobilising the AWS support and marketing machine – so we offer lots of structured access and support from AWS as an integrated enablement partner,” he said.
“Sw7 will still be doing what we do, but now we have formal integrated AWS support, so the level of AWS engagement has gone up 500 per cent.”
The accelerator’s goal, Jones said, is to accelerate 7,000 businesses across the continent.
“When you need to do something at a scale like this, it helps to have one of the world’s leading hyperscalers at your side,” he said.
In essence, Sw7 and AWS have come together to support founders and C-level leaders of product-led B2B technology businesses and Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) – helping them find the resources they need to build their businesses, go to market, acquire more customers, create predictable revenue, expand offshore, and raise funding and scale at an accelerated rate.
With access to the AWS Startup Industry, Global Mentors and AWS Startup Solution specialists, Sw7 enterprises are given access to insights that include the latest AWS services, best practices and technical expertise that built a global tech powerhouse. This is in addition to over 100 tech founder CEOs and various other industry and subject matter experts.