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SMB VARs looking take advantage of the technology refresh cycle currently underway through lease financing deals now have a new financing vehicle available to them.

IT distribution giant Ingram Micro has announced an expansion of its lease financing partners and program to include SMB VARs.

Available now through Ingram Micro’s Preferred Leasing, or IMPL, program, the distributor is offering new leasing options to include managed services financing, 100 percent software financing, public sector leasing, small ticket leasing, and vendor-specific leasing offerings from Cisco Systems and IBM, according to Ingram Micro.

Solution provider partners can also use IMPL’s private label financing solutions to brand their own company name and create a custom financing for their customers, the company said.

“Over the last few years we’ve seen interest in the SMB space picking up and we recognized the missed opportunity,” said Kelly Carter, director of credit at Ingram Micro. “Resellers were telling us this is what they’d like to see.”

In its most recent survey of SMB VARs, Ingram Micro found that they’d shown a “dramatic” increase in interest in such programs.

With that in mind, Ingram Micro has worked to more than double the number of its financing partners over the last year—growing it by four—to a total of six primary and eight total. The move is designed to bring information about how to do such deals and actual financing programs to SMB VARs, according to Carter.

Ingram Micro said that each financial services vehicle is offered in conjunction with one or more of the program’s lending partners and available to the distributor’s resellers in the United States.

Lease financing started out in the enterprise space as IT departments moved to a different model for refreshing technology by renting the hardware instead of buying it. Often software sales and installation and consulting services were also bundled into the deal, too, making it more complex.

But SMBs have been ill-equipped to deal with the complexity of these kinds of deals and may have a harder time finding financing for large lease deals, Carter said.

To read more about Tech Data’s recent SMB financing initiatives, click here.

Some deals just wouldn’t be done as a result, according to Carter.

“Resellers would have to go out on their own to find leasing finance partners,” she said. “For a lot of SMB VARs that was overwhelming. It’s difficult to find someone reliable and to spend time researching the best rates and the best partners.”

Ingram Micro said that smaller VARs also weren’t sure when to use leasing and how to incorporate it into their sales processes. Ingram Micro’s finance partners including new ones such as National City and DLL, in addition to the distributor’s own in-house team, will help walk SMB VARs through the way such deals work.

To participate in the Ingram Micro lease financing program resellers must submit an online application to be initially approved. Then each leasing partner will also have its own application.