IBM allots $2B to support stimulus health IT implementation
IBM Global Financing, the lending and leasing business segment of IBM, is adding a $2 billion financing component to help providers finance health IT initiatives tied to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

The Armonk, N.Y.-based company said that the move will help "U.S. organizations move ahead with IT projects that could improve their infrastructure or competitive edge and point them in the direction of economic recovery."

Since the ARRA was signed into law by President Barack Obama, IBM's consulting and technology business units have been helping enterprises build out their infrastructures to spur growth in their communities around some of the stimulus areas identified in the Act, such as Smart Grid, Health IT and Broadband Access.

"In order to fast track our nation's recovery, there needs to be an increased focus on public and private partnerships," said John Callies, general manager of IBM Global Financing. "This financing program is intended to help seed projects of the future that will improve citizen services and ultimately aid in our nation's economic resurgence."

The bulk of the $2 billion in financing money for technology projects for credit-qualified clients will come in the form of:
  • Enhanced low rates and flexible payment options;
  • Deferred payment plans;
  • Financing facilities that offer structured lines of credit; and
  • Specialized project financing packages that allow clients to align their payment streams throughout the course of the project to the anticipated benefits.

Market research firm IDC said that as a direct consequence of capital market issues, it expects the worldwide IT leasing and financing market to exceed $100 billion in 2009, an increase of more than 10 percent on a declining base of IT sales, according to Joseph Pucciarelli, IDC research director-technology financing strategies.