Vantiv Review


Overall Rating Breakdown
Sales & Marketing Tactics
Costs & Contract Terms
Complaints & Service
BBB Rating

Vantiv Overall Rating

"B-" Credit Card Processor Rating

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Jump to: Sales & Marketing | Costs & Contract | Complaints & Service | BBB Complaints

Vantiv Overview

Vantiv Logo

Vantiv Logo

Vantiv (vantiv.com) is the merchant services and credit card processing division of Fifth Third Bank. The company is one of the largest payment processors in the United States and is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under “VNTV” as the stock ticker. Vantiv entered the merchant services industry in 1991 under the name of Midwest Payment Systems, changed its name to Fifth Third Processing Solutions in 2003 and then again changed its name in 2011 to Vantiv. Since its founding, the company has acquired several other credit card processors and ISOs, including ACI Merchant Services, Card Management Corporation (CMC), TNB Card Services, National Processing Company (NPC), and, most recently, Mercury Payment Systems. Vantiv is a direct processor sponsored by Fifth Third Bank. The company’s corporate headquarters is located at 8500 Governors Hill Dr., Cincinnati, Ohio 54249, but Vantiv also has offices in Illinois, Indiana, and Texas.

Vantiv Sales & Marketing Tactics | C

Key Points – Sales & Marketing 
Uses independent resellers? Yes
Promotes deceptive rate quotes? No
Discloses all important terms? No

Vantiv appears to market its services through several different methods, including directly within its own sales channels as well as indirectly through partnerships with sub-ISOs and independent resellers. The company also markets heavily through National Processing Company, its largest subsidiary, and Fifth Third Bank. Although Vantiv does not appear to use any deceptive rate advertising or quoting tactics, its grade is negatively affected by the use of sub-ISOs, independent resellers, and subsidiaries. This marketing tactic makes it difficult for the company to control the sales tactics used to sell its services and spreads merchant complaints across several different company names, instead of concentrating them on one source.

Vantiv Marketing Example

Vantiv Costs & Contract Terms | C-

Key Points – Costs & Contract Terms
Swiped rate: Variable
Keyed-in rate: Variable
Termination fee: $250-$295 or none
PCI compliance fee: Variable
Equipment lease: Variable

Vantiv merchant account agreements appear to vary from merchant to merchant based on several factors including who set up the merchant account as well as a merchant’s business type and processing volume. The standard contract is reported to have a three-year service agreement with an early termination fee that ranges from $250 to $295. Additionally, the contract may automatically renew for successive one-year terms if not cancelled within a small window of opportunity. Based on reviews left by a few merchants, some Vantiv agreements may contain a Liquidated Damages clause; however, this reviewer was unable to verify these claims prior to the publishing of this review. The company also appears to charge a PCI Compliance fee which may be assessed either on a monthly or annual basis and may vary in cost from one account to the next. Vantiv is earning a below average score in this section primarily due to its automatically renewing contract in combination with an early termination fee.

[Related: Get quotes from a provider with “A” rated contract terms]

Vantiv Complaints & Service | B

Key Points – Complaints & Service
Total complaints: 20+
Live customer support? Yes
Most common complaint: Hidden fees

The name “Vantiv” reveals approximately 15 complaints outside of the Better Business Bureau (BBB), a few of which use the terms “rip off” and “scam.” When researching its former name, “Fifth Third Processing Solutions,” this reviewer also found a low complaint count for a company of its size and time in business. The complaints fall into two common types, in which merchants either report surprise over the early termination fee or complain of poor customer service. You can see actual merchant reviews at the bottom of this article and by visiting our Fifth Third Processing review. It should also be noted that some of Vantiv’s sub-ISOs and subsidiaries have a substantial amount of complaints. We have not factored these complaints into this rating because it is unclear who is ultimately responsible in these cases. Merchants are strongly encouraged to fully read and understand the terms of any merchant account agreement before signing any documents.

Vantiv BBB Report | A- (CPO Adjusted)

Key Points – BBB Report
Product/service: 26
Billing/collection: 12
Advertising/sales: 4
Guarantee/warranty: 0
Delivery: 0

As of this review, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) is reporting that Vantiv is not BBB accredited and is awarding the company an “A+” rating. The report shows a total of 42 complaints (up from 34 as of our last update) filed in the last 36 months, with 26 regarding problems with products and services. Of the remaining complaints, 12 are due to billing and collection and four to an advertising or sales issue. The majority of the complaints have been resolved to the merchants’ satisfaction while seven have reported an undesirable outcome despite the BBB believing a good faith effort was made by Vantiv. We have adjusted the rating to an “A-” for the purposes of this review because is it is our philosophy that “A+” ratings should be reserved for reports with no complaints.

Bottom Line

For Vantiv’s size and time in business, the company appears to be performing at an above-average level in terms of overall merchant satisfaction. The factors that lower the company’s rating are extensive use of sub-ISOs, resellers, and subsidiaries (a tactic which makes measurement of merchant satisfaction difficult to quantify), reports of poor customer service, and reports of nondisclosure of the early termination fee prior to setting up accounts. Additionally, a few of Vantiv’s sub-ISOs and subsidiaries have numerous complaints, for which Vantiv may or may not bear some responsibility (a fact we hope to better understand in future updates of this review).

This review was originally published on 5/7/12 and was last updated on 7/29/14.

Leave your Vantiv review in the comment section below:


Vantiv Review

Rated 3 Out of 5 Stars
Reviewed by Phillip Parker
Reviewed on 2014-07-29 13:49:38

For Vantiv’s (vantiv.com) size and time in business, the company appears to be performing at an above average level in terms of overall merchant satisfaction. The few available Vantiv negative reviews are due to the company’s extensive use of sub-ISOs, resellers and subsidiaries… Learn more in this Vantiv Review.

 

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About the author

Phillip Parker

Phillip Parker is a former merchant services agent turned small business advocate and the author of "Fee Sweep," which teaches merchants how to dramatically lower their processing rates, eliminate junk fees, and avoid fine-print scams. He founded CardPaymentOptions.com to help merchants enact positive change in the credit card processing industry.



 
Phillip can help you find an ethical and honest processor that will offer you great rates. Click here to request a free provider consultation.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.cardpaymentoptions.com/credit-card-processors/vantiv/

17 comments

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  1. Andrei

    DO NOT EVER work with this company!!
    This is a very dishonest company!! actually the worst I have ever worked with.
    They kept taking money by “mistake” from my account. Every single time a “mistake” happened I had to call this company to get reimbursed and argue about it for hours!
    The sales person also lied about many things before selling her products, after the sale never answered the phone anymore.
    I will have to close my business account to stop these thieves from taking my money.

    Do not read it and think it is just one more complaint from a frustrated customer and that this is not gonna happen with you. It will!

    TERRIBLE COMPANY TO DO BUSINESS WITH! do not recommend to anyone!

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    2 / 2 found this review helpful.
  2. ron

    I have been told that VANTIV is owned by VISA. Anyone have any info. I do not find it in anything I’ve seen.

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  3. Anna Jones

    Do not do business with Vantiv! You will regret it! Have been trying to cancel service now for weeks, and am just getting the run-around. Despite faxing the close request form from multiple Fifth Third Branches, they keep claiming different parts of the form are being cut-off. Oh, and the only way I found that out is because I called them. They did not call me to say I needed to re-fax the form. They just charged more fees. They refuse to accept the form via email, and they refuse to give me any kind of confirmation in writing that account is closed. We are no longer under contract. Wish I had read all of the negative reviews before signing on with them. Last time I called customer service the rep, Victoria, refused to transfer me to a supervisor, refused to wait on the phone while I attempted yet another re-fax, and then hung up on me.

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    6 / 6 found this review helpful.
  4. Sharon Birmingham

    This company is the most dishonest company I have ever encountered and policy that obviously caters to them. I have replaced the original contract signer and so he obviously is no longer with the company. NPC tells me they cannot deal with me or with the owner of the company that they only can deal with the individual that signed the original contract. I guess there isn’t a clause within the document for that.
    Also, I have tried to follow procedure outlined in the original contract but hey that’s not the way they do it anymore. The phone numbers have since changed, etc. Wow, really. And guess what, monies are still coming out of the account, because even though I have documentation that I sent to terminate the contract timely, it was somehow not received. Hmmmm…now the contract can continue says the tiny print at the bottom and your locked in and monies continue to come out of your account. I believe this to be fraud. There must be a clause within any contract in the case that the signor is no longer capable to serve that position. I was told that a fax was needed to terminate the contract from the original signor so I did find him and he kindly obliged. Now I’m told that he would need to delegate someone to take his place by yet another fax.
    I’ve been yelled at by this company, hung up on and I just want to end the contract and stop them from taking our hard earned monies that they are not authorized to take.
    Yes, I am a bit frustrated as this has cost me many man hours of research and being on the phone, etc.
    If I close the bank account maybe then I will get resolution.

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    3 / 3 found this review helpful.
  5. Kristopher

    Worst choice ever! If you value your money and business. Never, ever choose Vantiv! ACH Compliance Fees…Non-Regulatory Fees, Hosting Fees…..and many, many more hidden charges you are never told about up front and then told by Vantiv it was my fault for not knowing. I feel like is was legally robbed by Vantiv.

    How their license hasn’t been pulled by the SEC is beyond me. They hired a new manger from the now defunct Icon, then Axiom, and finally Oracle (Sean Mecham – look him up) who was wanted by the SEC (and currently sits in jail) without vetting him first. I had the displeasure of meeting this crook. If Vantiv can’t hire the right people, stand behind their word, or stop deceiving consumers, they are going to be a has been organization with a lot more people sitting behind bars.

    He’s a little something from the Phoenix Business Journal. This is the type of people who are employed by Vantiv and I’ve had many of the following examples happen to me in less than a year of Vantiv services. I am currently cancelling all present and future dealings with this organization and I would urge everyone to try someone else other than Vantiv. I hope you read this in it’s entirety. It’s from 2013.

    The proprietors of Valley credit card payment processing companies have been indicted on money laundering and wire fraud charges by a federal grand jury in Phoenix.

    Sean Clinton Mecham, 36, Ashley Brisbin Mecham, 27, Jonathan L. Cannon, 31, and Jake Brisbin, 26, were indicted on various charges this month. They were executives and employees at Icon Payment Solutions, Axiom Merchant Services and Oracle Payment Services, according to court documents.

    Prosecutors allege the Mechams deposited $2.9 million worth of ill-gotten gains into accounts they controlled and used the money to buy a luxury boat, Mercedes and Maserati cars and off-road trucks for racing.

    Their companies processed credit card payments for retailers and other businesses. The indictment charges the quartet with misleading customers into signing leases for credit card machines and forging as many as 200 business owners and managers signatures.

    They also were charged with changing contract terms after business clients signed other agreements. Sales prospects were told they would pay lower credit card fees if they signed up with the defendants’ companies.

    The Better Business Bureau and other consumer websites also list complaints against the company and the executives. One consumer complaint says there may be some family link between Sean Mecham and deceased former Arizona governor Evan Mecham.

    Ashley Mecham and Jake Brisbin were arraigned on charges Nov. 7 in Los Angeles and were released. Cannon was arraigned in Phoenix on Nov. 12, according to prosecutors. Sean Mecham is still in custody pending trial, according to prosecutors. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for Arizona want Sean Mecham held arguing he is a flight risk, skipped court hearings for civil complaints against his companies and has previously withdrawn large amounts of cash. Court documents also show prosecutors claiming Sean Mecham threatening employees, family members and others from talking about his business dealings.

    Mecham and other defendants could not be reached for comment. David Eisenberg, a Phoenix white-collar defense attorney, could end up representing Sean Mechem. Eisenberg said he has not yet been assigned to the case and declined further comment.

    The numbers of that business in the investigation have been disconnected or are no longer in service.

    As you see…things can change when greedy executives get their hands on your money. As of today…Vantiv won’t give me all the money we agreed upon like they said they would.

    Good Luck and don’t ever say I didn’t tell you so.

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    3 / 4 found this review helpful.
  6. fazilalieddspa

    Ripoff I tried to cancel this agreement after 9 years and wad help hostage by Mitch Gross. worst company to do business with ..charged my account $700. cancellation fee.

    I am contacting the Better business bureau to get this vulture out of the credit card scam

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    1 / 1 found this review helpful.
  7. Ted Keithj

    Vantiv charged us an early termination fee even though we only had a 1 year term and we closed our account after 2 years. We’ll be filing complaints with the FTC and our state AG as well as taking legal action. And their customer service was the worst of any company we’ve ever dealt with. Someone should file a class action against them.

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    1 / 1 found this review helpful.
  8. Kris

    DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY. They are a rip off. They have taken money from our account without authorization. The Customer Service pretends like they care, BUT THEY DON’T! I am still fighting to get our money back that they say are credible charges. Oh how I regret ever working with this company.

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  9. Susan

    I signed up with 5/3 processing (Vantiv) as a brand new business owner. I had had accounts with 5/3 for years, and had been happy with them, so after being inundated with merchant service providers and not understanding much about it, I signed with someone I thought would be fair. Big mistake. The fees are an average of 2-3 times what many other providers offer. The contract is 3 years, and automatically renews unless sufficient written notice is given–fine, I can do written notice.There is an early termination fee of $295, again, that is fine. I would gladly pay that to get out from under them. But hidden midway through a very lengthy contract is the liquidated damages clause. As I apply this to my own situation, this could run $6000 to $10000, and I am a very small, very new business. This kind of charge would bankrupt me in an instant. So I am on the hook to this company for exorbitant fees for about another year, and see no way out.
    As an additional bonus they required me to lease a terminal for $45 per month for 4 years ($2160). The terminal new would cost about $200.

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  10. julea Ingold

    DO NOT DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY…. I have never sign a contract with this company but somehow they worked their way into our system from taking over the previous company that I have used Novus. I have asked with verbal and written confirmation to terminate our contract, even though I don’t have one. It took me a year to finally closed out the contract, but recently they debit and annual due of 89.00 out of my account without my permission. They refused to refund back to my account. Their fees area outrageous!!! Can you guys help to bring this company to justice!!

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  11. Danielle Jacques

    Cancelled with them due to massive fees, and then they deducted $250 from my bank account for early termination (after 4 years!). This fee was not mentioned when I signed up and I asked and wrote down every fee that they did admit to, nor was it mentioned when I cancelled. Really scammy.

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  12. Jack

    DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY.
    This company is scam. i sat down with the sales representative and discuses about my current credit card processing company how they are charging extra fees and their rates are much higher than theirs’; they promised me that i will save money by signing up with them, so i did. what a biggest mistake i made.

    Right after i sign up the contract, this sales person changed my contract rate that he quoted me without me knowing, i am now paying more fees and higher rate than i have ever did. I call Vantiv about this and they admits the wrong doing and send me the refund. however, a month after the refund of the extra fee, all my rate went up. i call them once more and this time i was told this is want i will be paying. i required to have the contract cancelled, which stated on the contract that i can do so, but i got rejected.

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  13. Mona Williams

    Do not do business with this company. They charge excessive fees and when you try to cancel they will charge you a $295.00 early termination fee plus liquidated damages which would be in the thousands according to Virginia a customer service rep. They are also charging us a $500.00 PCI compliance fee that other companies don’t charge along with a $139.50 monthly breach assistance fee per location, this is also a fee no other company seems to have. I was a customer of Fifth Third Bank and mistakenly trusted them when they approached us about using them as our credit card processor (BIG MISTAKE). I spoke with Jason at FTPS and he was little to no help and now he doesn’t even bother to respond to my e-mails. I will be contacting the BBB to file a complaint along with FTC and E-commerce.

    Do yourself a big favor and find another company to do business with Vantiv is the worst.

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  14. Ruth B Kaplan

    My experience with Vantiv has not been positive. The sales rep did not disclose a $5 per ticket “pass through” fee that made it prohibitively expensive to use their service. They have twice imposed fees without notifying me and after I have addressed the issue with them. The different departments are isolated from each other, and I have received three different sets of instructions and information about how to close my account. I would not do business with them again, knowing what I know now.

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  15. Richard Clos

    Caution; Vantiv fees are excessive, inquire with intuit solutions or any other carrier for better value. Upon discovery of the excessive fees that Vantiv had been charging us, we cancelled with them in writing. 15 days later they continued to access our bank account(without authorization) deducting additional charges for early termination fees. In addition, they charged us another 179.00 for annual fees for the next year that we are’nt using, and refuse to refund even a prorated refund. I would caution anyone from doing business with or allowing access to any accounts with Vantiv as they have shown unlawful and dirty business practices.

    Our lawyer informed us that they lost automatic deduction authorization the minute we cancelled in writing and additional charges should have been invoiced by mail as a final explanation of charges. We are going to start proceedings against Vantiv with our bank, the Federal Trade Commission, and then in court after steps 1 & 2 have been fulfilled .

    Save yourself this trouble and don’t use Vantiv.

    Richard Clos

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  16. Jodi Graf

    Poor customer service and long wait times at Vantiv. Disputed a charge I specifically had a confirmation number for my call on in which I was told I wouldn’t be seeing any further charges. Had to call yet again when I did in fact see further charges. Spent over 90 minutes in runaround calls to be told I was wrongfully informed and my fees would not be removed. TERRIBLE COMPANY TO DO BUSINESS WITH!

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  17. Trina

    This is a review that was left about our business thanks to Vantivs aweful service…..very frustrating!!!!

    “My dog was happy and they seemed nice enough. She is a runner, and did not get away, so that’s always good.

    I get a bad feeling about their billing practices though. They charged my credit card twice. FIRST time I called them, they said to wait to see if it was a repeat transaction. SECOND time, they said wait 7-10 days, as it was the credit card company’s fault, and it will be refunded. THIRD time, they said 1-3 business days. 2.5 weeks later, I finally have my money back, but who wants to go through all that mess, especially after what was supposed to be a relaxing vacation??

    Bottom line….cash is always better at small businesses, for you and for them.”

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