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Cisco Capital and Raiffeisen Bulgaria Launch Innovative Financing Program to Help Small and Medium-Sized Bulgarian Businesses Buy Latest Technology


Financing Program Includes Promotional Zero Percent Interest Rate Through August 31, 2007

SOFIA, Bulgaria .- State-of-the-art information and communications technology is a key differentiator that can help small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) operate more competitively and efficiently within international supply chains. As part of their continued commitment to Bulgaria’s economic development, Cisco CapitalTM, Raiffeisen Leasing and Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria today announced the launch of a financing program designed to fuel the expansion of SMBs in this country. The financing program includes leases and loans for all Cisco® products and services under flexible terms and fast credit processing.

To encourage local SMBs to take advantage of the offer, Cisco Capital and Raiffeisen are offering a promotional zero percent interest rate on leases and loans under the financing program approved on or before August 31. Leases and loans approved after August 31 will be available at a 5 percent per annum financing rate.

This competitive financing rate and flexible terms are available through Cisco certified and Cisco SMB Select resellers in either a lease or a loan. Leases are offered through the Easy Lease program, a straightforward package from Cisco Capital and Raiffeisen Leasing. Loans will be underwritten by Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria. Cisco resellers will assist SMBs to complete financing documentation and process it with Raiffeisen. The financing program is designed to enable SMB customers to adopt state-of-the-art network technology quickly and easily-with minimal initial investment and maximum convenience.

Small and medium-sized businesses are a key part of Bulgaria’s national economy, making up 99.3 percent of all Bulgarian businesses and employing more than half of the country’s total workforce. A recent survey1 conducted in Bulgaria reveals that local SMBs are quickly embracing technology, and more than 90 percent said fast broadband connections, networked PCs, and appropriate storage and backup were must-have technologies. Nearly as many (87 percent) see secure networking as an essential technology today, and 82 percent see Internet Protocol (IP) communications as a key technology over the next three years. However, 43 percent of survey respondents also said that the biggest technological barrier was the cost.

“Adequate financing can help remove budget issues, allowing companies to invest in the technology they require to improve business productivity and operational efficiency while minimising costs,” said Peter Ivanov, country manager of Cisco Bulgaria. “The competitive financing offer by Cisco Capital and Raiffeisen puts Cisco technology within the reach of more SMBs, enabling them to increase productivity, equip their workforces with the latest communications and information technologies, and better compete in the local and international marketplace.”

“We are pleased to work with Cisco Capital and Cisco channel partners to offer our mutual SMB customers a tailored finance program that makes it easier for them to acquire essential IT communications equipment,” said Momtchil Andreev, chief executive officer of Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria EAD.

SMB financing under the financing program in Bulgaria is available at a zero percent rate for a promotional period until August 31, 2007. Beginning September 1, the financing offer will be available at a 5 percent rate. Local companies can make use of a 24- to 36-month term and a fixed interest funding option.

1Coleman Parkes Research “SMB Growing Pains,” 2006


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