IBM offers deferred payment plan on IT services

After using financing incentives to encourage sales of hardware and software in the past, IBM is for the first time offering 90-day payment-deferral incentives to customers wanting to buy IT services.

In an announcement today, IBM said it will offer 90-day payment deferrals on select service contracts valued at between US$50,000 and US$1 million that are financed through IBM. The offer is good on contracts for IBM Business Integration Services and Integrated Technology Services signed by March 31.

For hardware purchases of between $50,000 and $1 million, the company is also offering financing at rates as low as 4.6 percent on most IBM eServers, personal and printing systems, storage subsystems and store systems shipped and installed by March 31. The rates are available to qualified customers in the U.S., Canada and selected Latin American countries.

The special financing and deferred-payment deals are being offered through IBM Global Financing.

Antonio Muttoni, director of sales operations and marketing for IBM's financing group, said the offers are an excellent opportunity for the company to increase sales while offering savings and assistance to customers. "It helps customers get started and move forward," Muttoni said.

Catherine Manion, general manager of IBM Global Financing, said the incentives are "one of the many creative paths we're taking to help customers invest in IT today to remain competitive and to help them create a solid e-business infrastructure."

This is the third time since October that the company has tried to lure customers with special financing. In November, IBM unveiled 0 percent financing on its xSeries servers. And in October, IBM and Compaq Computer Corp. each offered special deals to customers, including deferred payments and special interest rates on hardware and software purchases.

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