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Cisco Systems Capital is extending, to July 28, its zero percent progress payments, to free cash flow and enable VARs to take on more projects at one time, the company announced Jan. 8.

Progress payments provide VARs with interest-free advances, up to 80 percent of the total, to help cover expenses on Unified Communications deployments when the final payment might be months away.

The measure will enable Cisco VARs to juggle more projects at once without struggling to keep the lights on while waiting for final payment, Cisco and VARs said.

Pointer Cisco Capital and Ingram Micro team on SMB lease financing. Click here to read more.

Participating VARs are paid in installments as the project reaches milestones defined by partner and customer. On payment of the final stage, the total investment is transferred to a lease.

The program is a promotion to encourage Unified Communications adoption and applies only to those deals of that technology over $50,000. Only Cisco partners with the IPC (IP Communications) qualify, Cisco said.

Cisco also opened the program to resellers of distributor Ingram Micro that are not already working with Cisco Capital.

In addition, Cisco and Ingram launched Jan. 8 a leasing program, Cisco Express Leasing, to open access for more SMB VARs and customers. Both companies expect expanded terms and a streamlined process to make advanced network solutions accessible to more SMB customers and put more money in the channel.