SMC Networks has announced a leasing deal to help resellers better meet customers’ demands and to drive networking hardware sales.

The SMC Elite Leasing program, which falls under the SMC Elite Partner program, allows VARs to lease networking hardware, software, intallation and warranties

from US$5,000 to US$100,000 to customers. The Irvine, Calif.-based company made business partners aware of the new program earlier this year.

Tony Stramandinoli, director of marketing at SMC, said it was designed with the partners’ needs in mind.

“”It’s good to help the VAR not worry about upfront costs that are holding up projects and possibly add more stuff than they were able to before.””

Other benefits of leasing include no down payment and the term of the lease can be matched with the life of the equipment.

Stramandinoli said the program was created because resellers were asking for ways to grow their business, get larger dollars from their customers and make it easier for customers to make decisions.

“”The goal for us is to make it easier for the VARs to close the deal with the end users. For us in the long run it would hopefully be increased product sales and happy VARs.””

The SMC Elite Partner program, which was created two years ago, has approximately 350 to 400 partners in Canada.

The leasing program applies to any combination of hardware the VAR sells. For example, if a deal includes a Hewlett-Packard printer, Microsoft software and SMC products all can be bundled into one lease, said Stramandinoli.

Customers wishing to purchase equipment through the lease program must fill out a one-page application, which can be found online at www.smcleasing.com.

Customers can choose between three types of leases including fair market value (FMV); $1 buyout or fixed purchase percentage. FMV allows companies at the end of the lease to return the equipment, lease it for another year or buy the equipment at FMV. Under $1 buyout companies can purchase the equipment at the end of the lease for one dollar. FMV or PUT leases are similar to FMV but allow companies to cap their equipment buyout at a certain percentage – usually 10 per cent – of the equipment’s value.

There are also several payment options including a master lease with a line of credit from US $25,000 to US $5 million that customers can use to purchase equipment several times a year on one lease.

Resellers usually take between two to 12 hours to approve the application. Once the customer confirms the receipt of the equipment and services, payment is made directly to the reseller’s bank account.

Rod Stevens, sales manager at SMC reseller partner Qlan Corp., which is based in Laguna Hills, Calif., was pleased with the SMC leasing package. Leasing has always been a key part of proposals to customers, he said, but until now was available only from other vendors.

He said the SMC leasing deal “”gives our customers leverage to make things happen or allow them to purchase and install more than they otherwise would.”” Qlan is already working on an SMC-backed lease agreement with a customer, he said.

Stevens said many resellers either don’t take advantage or know how to take advantage of leasing programs that vendors offer.

“”They either don’t understand the value from a budgetary and accounting perspective or their customers’ needs from something other than a product requirement or both.””

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