Business challenge

CDW Corp. faced a unique challenge: a customer wanted to purchase technology that would be unavailable after year end, but budget constraints prevented additional expense during the ongoing financial year.


Structuring a 36-month lease, IBM Global Financing assumed ownership of the equipment and offered a scheduled exit from the contract on the customer’s desired timeline.


Wins a key deal

and meets a critical customer deadline

32% larger sale

with a lease that also helps free budget for additional services

15% reduction in customer cost

and no upfront payment required

Business challenge story

A unique financing challenge

As a multi-brand provider, CDW teams with top IT companies to deliver the technology solutions today’s business, government, education and healthcare leaders demand. The organization, an IBM Platinum Business Partner, offers products and services spanning the complete IBM offering portfolio and maintains a dedicated team of experts to work closely with onsite IBM representatives in meeting its customers’ evolving needs.

In 2017, a customer in the entertainment and gaming industry presented CDW with a unique challenge. The gaming provider needed to invest in new technology, but faced budget constraints that prevented an unplanned purchase within the ongoing financial year. “The customer could not take possession of the assets in 2017, but the devices would not be available after year end, so there was a real catch-22 involved,” says Michael Thies, Manager – IBM Software Practice at CDW.

IBM Global Financing is a resource that every single IBM Business Partner needs to investigate. It has helped our business grow tremendously.

Michael Thies, Manager – IBM Software Practice, CDW Corp.

Transformation story

The right technology without upfront payments

To better understand the gaming company’s requirements and help structure a funding solution, CDW engaged IBM Global Financing. “The first thing the customer brought up was not having budget available,” says Thies. “That immediately caused us to start thinking creatively and say, ‘We have a partnership with IBM Global Financing. How about we start a dialogue?’”

In discussions with the customer, CDW and the IBM Global Financing team discovered that the organization only planned to use the technology platform for three years. IBM Global Financing resources suggested a 36-month lease that passed title ownership for the assets to IBM Global Financing—enabling the customer to avoid an upfront cash outlay—and offered a scheduled exit on the desired timeline.

Pleased with the financing structure, the gaming provider signed on with CDW for the proposed solution. “It was a big win,” says Thies. “It was an expansion of what we’re doing with this particular customer and, ultimately, helped us build a better relationship.”

Results story

Larger sales and deeper customer connections

IBM Global Financing helped CDW provide the technology solution its customer needed within the given timeframe and structure an agreement that enabled the gaming company to acquire additional IBM services. Taking on the upfront costs for services to be provided in the second and third years of the contract, IBM Global Financing extended the initial scope of the customer’s solution while increasing the size of the sale for CDW by 32 percent.

Plus, with the three-year lease, the gaming provider paid 15 percent less than it would have if it had purchased the same products and services outright. By spreading the payments across 36 months, the financing structure also frees up funds for the business to invest in other areas. 

The IBM Global Financing partnership offers CDW a critical resource for engaging with customers going forward. “When we go in with IBM Global Financing, our customers see us as a more valuable Business Partner,” says Thies. “It’s just a great tool we can add to have those deeper conversations, especially with a CFO.”

CDW also appreciates the ongoing education its association with IBM Global Financing provides. IBM Global Financing resources regularly offer onsite training and guidance to keep CDW sellers up to speed on strategic financing structures. “IBM Global Financing is a resource that every single IBM Business Partner needs to investigate,” sums up Thies. “It has helped our business grow tremendously.”

business logo

CDW Corp.

Founded in 1984 and headquartered in Vernon Hills, Illinois, CDW is a multi-brand technology solutions provider. The Fortune 500 company maintains a broad portfolio, offering stand-alone hardware and software products as well as delivering fully integrated security, cloud, data center and networking solutions. Approximately 8,700 CDW employees in 26 locations serve business, government, education and healthcare organizations throughout the US, Canada and the UK.

Take the next step

To learn more about the IBM solution featured in this story, please contact your IBM Global Financing representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following website: