Middle East excluded from new Microsoft discount incentives

Recent end-user financial incentives offered by Microsoft in the US won't be given in the ME for now.

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By  Julian Pletts Published  May 5, 2009

Recent end-user financial incentives rolled out through the Microsoft Dynamics channel in the US will not be replicated in the Middle East for the time being, the company has confirmed.

The software vendor last week announced a series of new initiatives allowing resellers to offer discounts on a range of solutions, including its CRM and ERP products. End-users looking to make purchases of select enterprise applications via the channel also have the option of making repayments over the next three years.

Speaking to Channel Middle East, Tamer Elhamy, business solutions manager at Microsoft Gulf, said that such payment incentives were “not available” to partners in the Middle East because the arrangement in the US is facilitated through a local financial services firm.

Microsoft does not currently have any partnerships with similar organisations in the Middle East, although Elhamy admits the company would welcome the chance to engage with financial institutions and develop some sort of financial initiative that could be offered locally.

The vendor is also doing what it can to steer its channel partners through difficult market conditions as end-users continue to revise their IT budgets.

“What we are working on with partners is giving them extended credit terms,” explained Elhamy. “Let’s say that if a partner was working on 60 days or 90 days, we are extending that by a month or two months depending on the sales cycle, opportunity, size, history of the partner working with Microsoft and whether they are in the red list or the white list.”

This, insists Elhamy, has a knock-on effect, meaning that channel partners are able to pass extended payment terms onto the end-user. He says the decision for extension in channel payment terms is a direct result of feedback from Microsoft Dynamics partners in the Middle East that he has then relayed to the vendor’s HQ in the US.

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