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Ingram Micro Offers New Flexible Financing Payment Options

Lease Agreement

Heeding the call from resellers and their customers for new flexible payment options, distributor Ingram Micro this week announced a Technology-as-a-Service program.

The key differentiator between the new payment options and existing ones is that a solution can include hardware, software, cloud and a reseller’s own services wrapped together in a payment model.

Ingram Micro's Kelly Carter

Ingram Micro’s Kelly Carter

“Our resellers were telling us that they needed a [payment] solution where they could bundle multivendor solutions and add in their own reseller services. We had a good way to bundle in multivendor solutions through different finance options but we didn’t have a good way to wrap in the resellers services,” Kelly Carter, executive director of credit at Ingram Micro, told us.

Well, now they do, and in a number of flavors. Ingram Micro is also offering new flexible repayment options.

One option is via a traditional lease. Another is via a new rental option, as well as through other means of financing managed-services agreements where resellers can bundle their services into an agreement with their end user on their own and Ingram Micro can provide financing on the back end.

The new take on the traditional lease finance option is that Ingram Micro can now bundle in the resellers services to bill on one invoice. The billing can be monthly, or on another timeframe — and Ingram Micro can also, in some cases, fund a portion of that upfront, according to Carter.{ad}

Flexible rentals are a new offering from Ingram Micro — the distributor had a device-as-a-service subscription, which included a committed time period similar to a lease —typically a three-year period.  A new flexible rental option, coming soon, will apply to new products. Ingram Micro currently has in place a flexible rental option on certified refurbished equipment that requires a three-month rental commitment after which time the contract transitions to a month-to-month agreement.

“Again, we can bundle in the billing and also the reseller’s services and pass that back to them monthly,” Carter noted. Rentals are different from leases in that they’re not a finance agreement and only include a minimum short-term rental period.

Where it’s easy to add on to a lease, it’s difficult to downsize one, which is not the case with a rental. After the initial rental time period is met, a customer can give back all of the equipment, some of the equipment, etc.

When the new equipment rental goes into effect, within the next month, it will initially have a minimum rental period probably longer than three months that transitions to a month-to-month rental after the minimum rental period is met.

The rental option is also an OpEx expense versus a CapEx one for a lease because there’s no option to buy or to hold it over an extended period of time where the customer is essentially paying off the product. In 2019, accounting rule changes will impact all leases, and going forward require that all them be capitalized, Carter explained.

Here’s an example of how a reseller could use the flexible rental: Instead of selling a customer 100 laptops and then adding on a cloud solution, Microsoft licenses and additionally, some of their own managed services, Ingram Micro can put this all together on a single invoice and bill the end user a monthly fee for a flexible period of time.{ad}

Today, Ingram Micro can offer consolidate billing on rental options and leasing options.

Shortly, the distributor will have a new billing product that allows Ingram Micro to create a consolidated bill, with the reseller’s logo name on a single invoice. This new billing product may or may not have an as-a-service component to it.


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