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Buying a Printer: Financial Incentives

(March 2013) posted on Wed Feb 27, 2013

Vendors have assembled packages to help your shop expand its capabilities.

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By Mike Antoniak

If you’ve been pondering an expansion of print capabilities or upgrade to your equipment, it may be time to make your move.

Across the board, makers and marketers of large-format digital print systems are offering a variety of incentives to help you add one of their printers. Instant rebates, lucrative trade-ins, and bundles on everything from software to training – it’s the expected mix of enticements to make digital print technology more attractive to discerning buyers.

Yes, many of these types of deals have existed in the recent past. What’s different this year, however, is the availability of credit to allow more print service providers to take advantage of such deals. With the worst of the recession behind us, vendors, their finance departments, and lending partners are all eager to do their part to get the economy rolling with loans or leases for qualified buyers.

An improved finance picture
“We’re not all the way back, but 90 percent of the customers I send for financing today are getting approved,” says Dave Cich, partner in CET Color. “Five years ago, the only people who would even be considered for financing were those with great cash flow and perfect credit, and even then they might not get it,” he recalls.

Mutoh marketing manager David Conrad agrees: “The economy is bouncing back nicely from the recession of a few years ago. Banks and lending institutions are coming up with some very creative programs to help small businesses purchase the capital equipment they need to run and grow their business.” His own company’s finance wing, Mutoh Financial Services, has been qualifying customers with “creative programs to maximize their dollars and achieve their purchase goals.”

Lou Piermarini of Mutoh Financial Services says the financing picture is dramatically improved from 2010. Credit terms are better, and qualified buyers can forego the down payment. “Small business FICO score requirements have also come down,” he reports. “In 2010, the FICO score minimum requirement was 700 – in 2012 it was only 650. “The financial world has settled back to its old rhythm with lending becoming as active as it was prior to the financial meltdown,” says Piermarini.

At Polytype America, the American marketing wing for WiFag-Polytype UV printers, sales director Jim Cain notes, “Money has become somewhat easier to get, and leasing has gotten easier since the credit crunch of a few years ago.”