Founded in 2015, Ironwood Payments (iwpmts.com) is a merchant account provider that was created via the acquisition of ElitePay Global‘s merchant portfolio. The owners of Ironwood Financial (Ironwood Payments’s parent company) did not realize at the time of purchase that there were severe issues with the structure, culture, and business practices of ElitePay Global. As a result, Ironwood Payments received a high number of complaints over approximately one year that were similar to the complaints filed against ElitePay Global. Our rating for Ironwood Payments was very low during this period due to the company’s prior dealings with ElitePay Global, documented proof that many of Ironwood’s employees were former ElitePay Global employees, and many complaints that described exorbitant leasing fees and deceptive sales tactics.
Eventually, Ironwood hired a third party to conduct a full review of the company’s practices and suggest necessary changes. Ironwood also began to reach out directly to dissatisfied merchants and attempt to resolve their issues. Ironwood has contacted CPO to offer a significant amount of background information about the company and insight into its practices, and CPO has separately verified as much of this information as possible. CPO is now satisfied that Ironwood Payments has severed all ties with ElitePay Global and is committed to a total reform of its business practices. In fact, Ironwood Payments has taken proactive steps (documented in this review) to become a highly transparent and dependable merchant account provider.
However, it is worth noting that in December 2016, a class action lawsuit was filed against Ironwood Financial in Illinois Northern District Court. This complaint accuses Ironwood of secretly recording phone calls in which merchants disclosed sensitive financial information, and it also names Andy Bentley, Brian Bentley, Adam Bentley, Fifth Third Bank, First Data, Vantiv, Wells Fargo, and International Payment Services as defendants. The plaintiffs are seeking $5,000 per violation plus attorney fees. The lawsuit’s case number is 1:16-cv-11223, and it can also be found under searches for “Wang et al v. Wells Fargo, NA et al.” Ironwood believes that it will successfully defend the suit, but a federal judge ruled in April 2018 that it could proceed. This suit appears to be a remnant of the company’s holdover business practices from ElitePay Global and does not appear to be reflective of Ironwood’s current conduct.
Ironwood Financial, LLC, is headquartered in at 2718 West Oxford Loop, Suite 185, Oxford, Mississippi 38655. Ironwood also maintains two office locations in the State of Utah located at 50 West Broadway, Suite 500, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101 and 2150 South 1300 East, Suite 500, Salt Lake City, Utah 84106. Ironwood has contracted with Incorp Services, Inc. to provide registered agent services within the State of Utah. Ironwood Payments is a registered ISO/MSP of Fifth Third Bank, Cincinnati, Ohio. John Lewis and Dee Lovelace are the owners of Ironwood Payments.
- Sales & Marketing: Ironwood Payments does not hire independently contracted agents and has received a few complaints about its sales team.
- Costs & Contract: Ironwood Payments offers a multi-year contract through Vantiv with no early termination fee.
- Complaints & Service: Ironwood Payments has received approximately 10 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: Ironwood Payments has an “A” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received 49 complaints since September 2015.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Ironwood Payments