Nortel has hinted at further revisions to its partner programme this year following the recent launch of a new leasing service for its SME VARs.
The communications vendor hit its targets last year by recruiting 60 UK SME resellers. It told CRN that the emphasis would now shift from recruitment to reseller “activation”.
Backed by leasing giant Grenke Leasing, the new service will allow resellers to offer Nortel’s SME solutions for a fixed monthly fee.
Amanda Giddins, EMEA distribution sales director at Nortel, claimed that Grenke was the only leasing outfit that could reach the service levels Nortel had requested.
“Grenke was the only firm we approached that covered deals down to £500,” she said. “Its sales people will work hand-in-hand with our reseller base.
“Leasing is already popular for telecoms equipment, but we’re starting to see more of a trend towards leasing for PCs, software and applications, so it’s critical we offer this as a sales-enabler to our SME partners.”
Kevin Green, commercial director at Grenke Leasing, claimed that just 15 per cent of technology transactions in the UK are leased, although he added that the figure rises to 85 per cent among Times Top 100 firms.
“The problem with SME resellers is that they tend to look at financing as an objection, not a solution, when in fact it is the opposite,” he said. “If you are trying to sell a telephone system to an SME for £10,000, they are more likely to say yes if it is for £330 a month.”
Paul Fullman, product development director at VAR Datasharp, said: “We’ve always done leasing options ourselves, but in reality this can be complex. So when a vendor provides its own leasing service it is much more convenient.”
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