BenQ extends finance plans

BenQ has launched a new commercial finance lending program to help promote its image outside of the consumer market.

Known as BenQ Finance, it will enable authorised partners to extend leasing and rental facilities of $1000 and upwards to end-users in the SMB, corporate, government and education sectors.

The initiative was aimed at increasing the vendor's tender business and overcoming its market perception as a consumer-only brand, national sales manager, James Wright, said.

"The idea of providing finance is to put us into the same league as IBM, Dell and HP," he said. "Whether its small business or blue-chip, we are becoming a serious competitor in those spaces."

The announcement is the latest in a series of initiatives designed to lift BenQ's profile in the corporate, education and government sectors.

In March the vendor made discount pricing, subsidised business development, marketing support and demonstration equipment available in order to recruit vertically aligned VARs. Late last year it also created a corporate, education and government sales team.

While the current initiative was primarily aimed at growing the vendor's notebook market share, BenQ Finance would also help partners act as solution providers.

"Resellers could bundle our notebooks, monitors and projectors but also add servers, printers, software and installation services," Wright said. "That way, they can set themselves up as a one-stop shop."

Conceding that players like HP and IBM were entrenched at the top-end of the market, he said resellers offering BenQ products would still have a fighting chance.

"Because BenQ is the manufacturer we can make something non-standard - like Bluetooth - available in a particular notebook model for a customer," Wright said. "We can also keep some value for the channel despite notebooks being a price-sensitive market."

With an eye still on the home market, BenQ would look to launch a consumer financing option later in the year, he said.

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