SAP and SUSE share along history of successful partnership. SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) has exclusively been the base operating system for SAP HANA for quite some time and the market values this. It is just a logical step, that what works for the data center also works for the cloud.
In order to accelerate usage of SAP systems in the cloud, SAP developed its SAP Cloud Appliance Library, a preconfigured SAP System offered on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server in Amazon AWS cloud.
The purpose of such an environment is, that customers can start up such a system within minutes, where it needed long time for setup and configuration before.
Since SLES as a virtual image has been available on AWS since years, SAP uses it in exactly the same way as customers would use the SLES image. The only difference is, that customers would rather consume the SAP service, while SLES residing in the background.
All SLES packages and configuration changes, needed to deploy the SAP Cloud Appliance Library, are already included in the image, which gets started alongside with the SAP application. And the SLES releases are fully supported, thus the default images are updated as new releases are rolled out. And are kept up to date using the patching mechanisms available through AWS today.