Bluefin Payment Systems Review


Bluefin Payment Systems ( is a merchant account provider headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. The company was launched in 2007 and formerly operated under the name Capital Payments, but has grown rapidly under its new Bluefin name since mid-2012. The company offers a proprietary payment gateway called PayConex. Bluefin Payment Systems is a registered ISO/MSP of Deutsche Bank AG in New York and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., in Walnut Creek, California. John Perry is listed as the CEO of Bluefin.

In February 2016, Bluefin reached a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission following charges that it enabled a telemarketing scheme called The Tax Club to use merchant accounts to process consumers’ credit card payments. The Tax Club allegedly scammed consumers who were trying to start home-based businesses, and Bluefin (then operating as Capital Payments) was accused of processing payments for The Tax Club despite numerous red flags that the company was engaging in fraudulent activity. As a condition of the settlement, Bluefin “is banned from payment processing or acting as an ISO for several categories of clients and prohibited from assisting or facilitating any merchant it knows, or should know, is violating the FTC Act or the TSR. In addition, Bluefin must screen prospective clients that meet certain criteria, monitor their sales activity to detect indications of deceptive conduct, and terminate contracts with those engaged in deceptive conduct.”

Key Points

  • Sales & Marketing: Bluefin does not appear to hire independent sales representatives and has not received any merchant complaints about its sales team.
  • Costs & Contract: Bluefin appears to offer a three-year contract through First Data with a variable early termination fee.
  • Complaints & Service: Bluefin has received fewer than 10 public complaints.
  • BBB Rating: Bluefin has an “A” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received one complaint in the past three years.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Bluefin

Bluefin Payment Systems Products and Services


  • Retail
  • E-commerce
  • Education
  • Restaurant
  • Healthcare
  • Enterprise

Response from Bluefin Payment Systems

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Sales & Marketing

Key Points - Sales & Marketing

Employs Independent Resellers No
Advertises Deceptive Rates No
Discloses All Important Terms No

Bluefin’s website is easy to navigate and generally much more informative than the average industry website. The company markets its proprietary PayConex gateway and clearly explains the terms of PCI compliance, for which it offers its clients a free reporting tool. Bluefin does not appear to use independent sales agents or practice deceptive marketing strategies, and there are currently no complaints that accuse the company’s sales team of nondisclosure or misrepresentation of costs.

Bluefin’s 2016 FTC settlement does suggest that the company may have improperly processed payments for a company that was bilking customers out of their hard-earned money. However, this type of conduct doesn’t negatively impact the experience that other Bluefin customers may have. While we would normally condemn any company’s efforts to intentionally scam other business owners, we don’t see the 2016 settlement as a red flag about Bluefin’s merchant-facing sales team. We have accordingly given the company an “A” rating in this category.

Response from Bluefin Payment Systems

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Costs & Contract

Key Points - Costs & Contract

Swiped Rate Variable
Keyed-in Rate Variable
Early Termination Fee Variable
PCI Compliance Fee Variable
Equipment Lease Terms Variable

Bluefin doesn’t appear to have any publicly listed complaints about its contract terms, but we were able to locate one complaint filed under the Capital Payments name regarding unauthorized fees. Since it has been some time since Capital Payments completed its rebranding, this older complaint will not negatively impact Bluefin’s score in this category. Aside from this lone complaint, there is very little publicly available information regarding the specifics of Bluefin’s contract terms. The company’s program guide through First Data is available below, but it does not outline any specific costs or terms except for the fact that the contract lasts for three years and includes an undisclosed termination fee. We have found one or two complaints related to fund holds, but given Bluefin’s 2016 settlement, it’s reasonable to assume that the company is now hyper-aggressive with respect to potentially fraudulent payments. Merchants in borderline-high risk industries should be aware of this possibility.

Given the absence of complaints about this company, Bluefin will be awarded an “A” rating. See the Bluefin Program Guide.

Response from Bluefin Payment Systems

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Complaints & Service

Key Points - Complaints & Service

Total Online Complaints 10+
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint Fund Holds

We have located more than 10 negative Bluefin reviews, most of which can be found in the comment section of this review. Complainants cite delayed payouts, unreachable customer service, and difficulties with delays or fees upon cancelling service. These complaints have primarily been filed in the past two years with some consistency, but they do not paint an especially troubling picture of the company’s operations. Bluefin’s website does not appear to offer a direct customer support line, instead providing an email template, live chat, and an 800 number for general inquiries.

Response from Bluefin Payment Systems

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Key Points - BBB

Product & Service Complaints 0
Billing & Collection Complaints 1
Advertising & Sales Complaints 0
Guarantee & Warranty Complaints 0
Delivery Complaints 0

The Better Business Bureau report for Bluefin appears to be filed under a different address than the company’s Atlanta, Georgia, headquarters. The BBB awards Bluefin BBB accreditation and an “A” rating for its Melville, New York, location, citing one complaint filed in the last 36 months. This lone complaint was related to a billing or collection dispute and either was resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final assessment from the merchant. Given the fact that the company has received only one complaint, we agree with the BBB’s rating at this time.

Response from Bluefin Payment Systems

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Bluefin Logo

Bluefin Payment Systems Bottom Line

Bluefin Payment Systems appears to have carried over a low complaint record from its time as Capital Payments. The company’s straightforward website and lack of publicly listed complaints have resulted in a high overall grade. A 2016 FTC settlement could have forced the company to tighten the range of business types it serves, so higher-risk businesses will likely be better off searching elsewhere. As always, merchants are encouraged to carefully read all contract terms, even when dealing with an “A” rated provider.

Phillip Parker is a former merchant services sales agent who believes the industry has been overrun by people who engage in fraud and deception in order to steal from hard working business owners. He created this website to help you avoid the bad players, save money on fees, and to get peace of mind with your merchant account. If you would like to help support his work, learn more about our cost reduction service. We can evaluate your statement, tell you exactly how much you're overpaying, and then help you dramatically reduce your fees with your current credit card processor. Looking to switch instead? See our list of the best merchant account providers.

Schedule a Consultation with Phillip

13 Reviews Leave Your Review for Bluefin Payment Systems Below

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  1. Andrei Tarassov says:

    Worst experience with merchant processor. They were recommended by a software company that we switched to because of integration. Called and spoke with a sales rep. Told them that I want to try them at a new location. Explained that I need a terminal that will work over a phone line because there’s no internet at that location and won’t be there for another 2-3 months. They said no problem, sent me a terminal and charged me for it. When the terminal arrived, it was the one that requires computer and internet… Called them several times asking what are my options – if I can get another terminal instead, the answer was NO. Asked what can I do instead – no solution offered. Closed the account and still getting charged. Was promised the charges removed since I never was able to use the account. No refunds, got more charges instead. Trying to figure it out since July, they just keep charging me monthly and bouncing from one person to another. Stay away.

  2. Mimi Darvish says:

    Bluefin is a complet rip-off. I originally subscribed to Payquake and have used their platform for nearly 12 years for recurring CC and ACH. Last month I contacted them to change my bank account and it has been a complete disaster. Come to find out the Bluefin is the processor behind Payquake and they took it upon themselves without my knowledge or permission to switch me to their own new platform. Fortunately I noticed the change and contacted them right away, otherwise I would have lost ALL of my clients data. After I contacted them I was informed that I had to re-enter 12 years of CC information as the new platform did not carry over any of the info from Payquake. After hours of arguing, I was told they could revert me back to Payquake and I would continue using the system as previously, with the new bank account for the funds to be deposited.

    Unfortunately, today which is 5 days after the ACH and the CCs were processed, I received an email that they will not release any of my funds because they do not have verification as to the payments are being processed!!! Yet, they conveniently charged and withdrew their own processing fees out of my old bank account (which I had only kept a certain amount for a few checks to clear prior to closing it), and caused several NSF fees.
    Absolutely ridiculous. Clearly as others have also indicated they are using excuses to hold the customers money.

    I called and requested to speak to a supervisor, but I was being refused. After 30 minutes of being bounced around and told they have to take a message, I was finally put to speak with Lizette who introduced herself as a “Team Leader”. I proceeded to tell her the ongoing situation and how I needed her to take care of it to release my funds. Well, finally after drilling her I was told that she’s just a “Messaging Service” !!!! It’s clear this company is not professional and only putting on a show to portray themselves as an existing large company. I fear they are going out of business and taking my entire monthly salary (all of my clients funds) with them.

  3. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  4. Jonnie Grosshans says:

    Blue Fin is a rip off. They will sit on your payment forever. They will find any reason to sit on your money even after the client has paid their balance in full. They have done that to my business three times and cost me money in overdrafts. I have changed companies. They also charge many hidden fees.

  5. Sam Monroe says:

    Beware of hidden fees deducted monthly by Bluefin for 3rd party services that either do no exist or are crap. It seems these “fees” are mostly for them to cover their butt in case of a data breach or other security incident. I went to one website that it seems I am paying for and it was a joke! They are taking money each month and giving nothing in return. Look out!

  6. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  7. Jay says:

    Bluefin is horrible. I don’t even want to get into all the details, but I strongly recommend that you do not do business with this company under any circumstances.

  8. Bridget Griego says:

    Awful company. Their customer service reps are not trained properly. They don’t know what they are doing. I cancelled and closed my account the end of November and paperwork was never completed thoroughly. January comes around and they continue to deduct fees out of my bank account. Causes my account to become overdrawn and they refuse to accept responsibility or refund me bank service charges. Funds deducted from my account on January 4th I won’t see funds replaced in my account until the 20th!!! Horrible service!! Horrible company!!

    1. Bridget Griego says:

      After leaving this review the VP of operations reached out to me. Apologized for my inconvenience, said that they were implementing new training and refunded all of my fees including overdraft. As of today all my fees have been returned to my account.

  9. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  10. Melvin Benson says:

    Very unhappy client! We do tens of thousands of dollars a month with this company. We had a client dispute a charge. There was no validity to this claim, and before informing us of the dispute Bluefin put a hold on my account until we responded. Not only did they hold the amount disputed, but they held all charged amounts totaling over $12,000.00! Stay away or have a different contract!

  11. I closed my account 2 years ago and continued being charged for services not rendered. I personally closed this account and opened with another company. I faxed a closure form in and as of today, they will not reimburse me for the months that they charged me for no order processing. FRAUD! I am in the process of contacting the BBB, Federal Trade Commision, my Attorney General, and John Perry (CEO of This less than above board company). Sad I have to waste my valuable time with this circus because of their greed. Just reimburse me and all would have been well and good. If you are willing to give me 3 months back, why not the entire time that there have been no processes? Admittance of guilt…

    1. emily says:

      Chris, I am thinking of cancelling my Blue Fin. Thanks for this feedback. What is the process to cancel with them? Is there a cancellation charge?

  12. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  13. thomas says:

    Signed up with Bluefin for there integration with repair q, Paid $200 fee and I received the card reader in the mail and followed the instructions on setting up the device however it is not integrating with repair q, so I called them up and explained the situation, the customer service rep could do absolutely nothing for me other than take down my info and “have someone call me back” at an unkown time and date, let me remind you that I am trying to open a business and everything is on hold because of Bluefin right now, I have waited several days and have received no phone calls or emails from them, so I call back again, and I am told once again someone will contact me at an unspecified time and date, I asked when? a day? a week? but they could not tell me, right now I am so livid, they seem like they give absolutely zero fucks about their customers and I will make it known on facebook to all business that are looking to use repair q to steer clear because the payment integration company they use( Bluefin) is complete garbage.

  14. KIKI says:

    Bluefin was one of the worst processor i have ever had the displeasure of doing business with.They do not process funds in a timely manner.I might process $100 one day. three days later i would $ day $ day $18.00.the excuse i got was different credit cards different payment processing time.Getting anybody on the phone was nonexistent.they want you to leave a message so they can never call you back.I have been trying to close my account with them since august 2014.They have a new excuse for what I didnt do correctly to close form.They said mail it in.I did.three times. account still open.DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO HOLD YOU HOSTAGE. DO NOT TRUST THEM THEY WILL RIP YOU OFF.

  15. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  16. After 5 years of using Bluefin we have to say, Bluefin has gone rogue. Yes, they have always had some strange downsides such as only processing USD and no other currencies, or their buggy interfaces with some elementary security features missing in the way the interfaces are programmed, but they have at least collected and paid reliably over a 5 year period.

    However, in September they suddenly stopped passing on collected payments for a period of 2 weeks during which we tried to contact them and find out what the issue might be. The answers were sketchy and the included reasons such as “missing business information”. They never asked us for any updates to the business information they have on file. After all we had been a client since 5 years. They never inquired on anything, but suddenly decided to stop passing on collected funds and claimed they had no email addresses on file to contact us (while our accounting department and our tech support emails them every other month due to malfunctions of interfaces or other questions related to their software and services).

    We instantly sent them everything they wanted. They released the funds again. A few weeks later we started to receiving emails without signatures and from different addresses with a link to a URL and service we had never heard of (“cardconex”). The emails looked like phishing emails and our staff was reluctant to register at the linked site and submit additional business information. With phone calls we were able to finally verify the validity of these emails and the trustworthyness of the link, created an account with cardconex and filled out the online form as well.

    Then we received another email claiming that we also needed to send back the signed “Program Guide” which is nothing else but a 40+ page fine print of new Terms and Conditions. The email clearly stated that “in order to continue to fund our account we also had to sign and return this additional document”. Once received and reviewed we discovered that this document granted Bluefin unlimited rights to suspend and withhold funds for no specified reason and indicated that we would be locked into a new 3 year contract with penalties for early termination. Upon asking for further details on these two items in the 40+ page terms document, we received no answers. The questions were entirely evaded and our account was frozen again. It ended up being a blackmailing situation, as we had no choice but to sign the new questionable terms in order to protect our business, our staff and our clients. We sent the signed document without having received any answers to our questions and have to this very day not received the funds. Bluefin is unreachable and does not respond to emails any longer. They are now holding over 60,000 USD which is a lot of money for us. We don’t know what to do and will have to contact our lawyer today in order to probably take Bluefin to court.

    This is our experience with Bluefin.

    Andreas Kisslinger
    CEO, Cross Media /

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