IBM Puts $1 Billion Behind SMB Tech Projects

Michael Vizard
Slide Show

Virtualization Interest Grows Among SMBs

SMB interest in virtualization is high, but the actual progress of adoption has been somewhat slow.

Once in a great while a vendor does actually put its money where its marketing mouth is.

IBM today announced that its Global Finance Unit is making available $1 billion to small- to medium-size businesses that need financing for IT technology projects.

Andy Monshaw, general manager for IBM's midmarket business, says that IBM is prepared to approve the funding for those projects in as little as 60 seconds as part of an effort to make cash available to SMB organizations at a time when financial institutions around the world are reluctant to make capital available.

Interestingly, Monshaw says that, over the years, IBM has noticed that SMB companies are more readily adopting emerging technologies, which Monshaw says is because business executives at these companies generally have more exposure to consumer technologies and they want to apply those technologies to their business. The end result is that instead of being laggards when it comes to newer technologies, SMB organizations are showing an increased appetite for modern technologies such as virtualization.

Ultimately, giving SMB organizations access to capital is critical for both the IT industry and the economy as whole because, as IBM notes, 90 percent of the work force is employed at SMB organizations that account for 60 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP). Unless these companies have ready access to capital to help fund IT projects that are the lynchpin for driving new business processes, it's unlikely that any fundamental improvements to the overall economy are going to happen anytime soon.

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