Ingram Micro partners who used financing as a way to conserve cash during the early days of the pandemic experienced 11 percent growth, said Ingram Micro CFO of the Americas Anthony Mackle.
“We went back and we looked at everyone who used financing in Q2—it doesn’t matter what type—they grew their business by 11 percent,” Mackle told attendees of Best of Breed 2020, being held virtually by CRN USA parent The Channel Company. “And again, as I mentioned, in Q2 we had double- digit declines. But they were up 11 percent in a global pandemic. Outstanding.”
To give partners even more advantages, the IT distributor is now offering more financing to partners. It has rolled out Ingram Micro Flexible Payment Solutions, which includes 90-day terms for qualified partners between now and 5 January 2020, which extends the time to first payment into 2021.
This is on top of the popular Direct Express financing program that Ingram Micro debuted last year, which pays MSPs the total contract value up front on their as-a-service sales. That particular line of financing grew 61 percent in the second quarter, Mackle said.
“The way that the end users are now consuming technology is continually changing, and users are shifting away from the traditional buy-sell model and moving to everything as a service,” Mackle said. “This causes cash-flow constraints for many of our partners, and we have come up with financing alternatives to help them out.”
The challenging economy earlier in the year saw Ingram Micro’s revenue fall by double digits in the second quarter. However, Mackle said, revenue rebounded in third quarter due to high demand for work-from-home products.
Ingram Micro also is investing in automation to make the partner experience better, according to Mackle. Ingram Micro receives about 2.4 million phone calls each year from partners who are inquiring about an order, placing an order, changing an order or wondering where an order is, he said.
The distributor has streamlined that process through a partnership with Cisco Systems that has reduced quoting time from four hours to a matter of minutes.