Inovio Overview

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A Subsidiary of North American Bancard

Formerly known as “Argus Payments,” Inovio (inoviopay.com) is an online payment gateway provider owned by North American Bancard. The company operated independently as Argus Payments until 2014, when North American Bancard acquired it. It was rebranded as Inovio in 2016. It is unclear at this time whether Argus Payments (and, by extension, Inovio) has any connection to Argus Merchant Services. Despite their similar names, they do not share branding, and Argus Merchant Services currently operates without any apparent link to North American Bancard. Most evidence suggests that Argus Merchant Services and Argus Payments are separate entities, but a lack of details about Argus Payments’s ownership and history make this difficult to confirm.

Location and Ownership

Like Argus Payments before it, Inovio emphasizes that it is a payment gateway provider rather than a conventional credit card processor. However, Inovio does offer integrated merchant accounts through North American Bancard, making its payment processing option indistinguishable from a North American Bancard merchant account. Inovio lists its headquarters as 21650 Oxnard Street, Suite 1200, Woodland Hills, CA 91367, and Conal Cunningham is the general manager and founder of Inovio. Inovio should not be confused with Inovio Pharmaceuticals, a large pharmaceutical company.

Inovio Review Table of Contents

  • Costs & Contract: Inovio appears to be marketed as a product of North American Bancard and will possibly come with North American Bancard’s contract terms.
  • Complaints & Service: Inovio has received fewer than 10 public complaints.
  • BBB Rating: Inovio does not have a profile with the Better Business Bureau at this time.
  • Sales & Marketing: Inovio does not appear to hire independent sales representatives and has not received any complaints about its sales practices.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Inovio

Inovio Statement Analyzer

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Products & Services Offered

  • Debit and credit card processing
  • Real-time sales reporting
  • Recurring billing
  • Multi-currency support
  • Virtual terminal
  • Online payment gateway

Types of Businesses Served

  • Retail
  • E-commerce

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Inovio Rates, Fees, and Costs

Key Points

Swiped Rate 1.00% - 4.99%
Keyed-in Rate 1.00% - 4.99%
Early Termination Fee Variable
PCI Compliance Fee Variable
Equipment Lease Terms Variable

Custom Pricing Likely

There is very little public information about Inovio’s pricing and fees at this time. The company does not provide its service agreement on its website or list any monthly costs of using the Inovio payment gateway. This may be because the company offers custom pricing to each merchant, or, more likely, it may be that Inovio’s e-commerce solutions are sold as integrated features of North American Bancard merchant accounts. This arrangement would give North American Bancard sales agents a significant amount of leeway to structure merchants’ Inovio pricing and fees.

Terms May Resemble North American Bancard’s

The standard North American Bancard contract has a service agreement of 36 months with what appears to be a Liquidated Damages Early Termination Fee (ETF) that is automatically debited from a merchant’s checking account upon cancellation of service. North American Bancard merchants frequently report undisclosed monthly and annual fees and higher-than-expected rates. Inovio’s status as a North American Bancard subsidiary is cause for merchants to read their contracts very carefully, and there is reason to suspect that Inovio’s contract terms would not be competitive with the cheapest merchant accounts.

An “A” For Now

Since there is almost no concrete information about Inovio’s pricing, and there are no merchant complaints about the company’s payment gateway user agreement, we have assigned Inovio an “A” in this section. However, merchants are strongly cautioned to inquire about all potential contract terms set by North American Bancard. If you have any knowledge of the standard Inovio contract (including possible monthly minimum fees or PCI Compliance fees), please leave that information in the comment section of this review.

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Response from Inovio

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Inovio Complaints & Customer Reviews

Key Points

Total Online Complaints <10
Live Customer Support No
Most Common Complaint N/A

Clean Complaint Record

As noted above, there aren’t any negative Inovio reviews to be found online, which is a good indicator that the company isn’t a scam or a ripoff. The company’s relatively recent rebranding is the most likely reason for its clean complaint record. However, it’s worth noting that there aren’t any online complaints filed against Argus Payments, either. In all likelihood, Inovio’s payment gateway is probably not going to be a source of frustration for most merchants, but the company’s affiliation with North American Bancard may begin generating complaints in the future.

Inovio Lawsuits

We have not found any outstanding class-action lawsuits or FTC complaints filed against Inovio. Dissatisfied merchants who wish to pursue a non-litigious course of action against the company should consider reporting it to the relevant supervisory organizations.

Inovio Customer Support Channels

North American Bancard rates poorly in this section due to reports of long wait times and unhelpful customer support. If Inovio itself does not handle all customer service issues, then Inovio merchants may find themselves dealing with North American Bancard for certain issues. For this reason, new Inovio users are encouraged to ask about what channels of support are available to them. Inovio currently lists a client support email address on its website and no customer support phone number. The addition of a clear, dedicated customer support number would help the company compare favorably to the top-rated providers for great customer service.

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Response from Inovio

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Inovio BBB Rating Summary

No Profile Available

The Better Business Bureau does not currently maintain a profile for Inovio. We therefore will not factor a BBB rating into this review.

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Response from Inovio

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Truth In Marketing & Advertising

Key Points

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

No Sales Complaints

Inovio appears to market its products primarily in partnership with North American Bancard and through traditional advertising. There is no indication at this time that the company employs independently contracted sales agents to sell its products, and we cannot find any Inovio complaints that accuse the company’s sales team of unethical conduct.

Review Terms Carefully

Inovio’s focus on e-commerce technology means that it has less incentive to push unsavory merchant account contract terms on merchants than traditional merchant account providers. That having been said, North American Bancard has a poor reputation when it comes to rate quoting and fee disclosure. Inovio merchants should therefore clarify the terms of their contract with the company that is supplying the merchant account, especially if that company is not Inovio. If you suspect that you have had undisclosed fees added to your Inovio contract, we recommend seeking a third-party statement audit to eliminate hidden charges.

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Response from Inovio

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Inovio Logo

Our Opinion of Inovio

A Solid Payment Gateway

Inovio rates as a reliable payment gateway provider according to all available information. The company’s affiliation with North American Bancard is a red flag, especially because NAB rates poorly compared to the top overall providers, but we have so far found zero evidence of dissatisfaction among Inovio merchants. Our rating will be subject to change as more merchant feedback becomes available.

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Thank you for reading my review. I hope that it has helped you with your research.

My Qualifications

I'm a former credit card processing sales director who left the industry to start my own a small business. From the time that I starting working in the merchant services industry to when I left to write about it, I've been on the pulse of payments for nearly 15 years. It didn't seem fair to keep this insider knowledge to myself, so decided to build this website to help you research which providers to use and how to save money on rates and fees. I've reviewed hundreds of companies, read thousands of user reviews, and learned the pricing tricks of every provider. If you have questions about credit card processing, you can find the answers here. Simply scroll to the top of the page to find the search bar. You can also message me if you need any guidance.

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