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Merchant Brokers Group Review
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UPDATE 2/25/2019: The Merchant Brokers Group website is currently inactive, but it was accessible as recently as one month ago. It is possible that Merchant Brokers Group brand has been discontinued, or it could simply be having web hosting issues. (https://sharonsteelerealestate.com/) We will continue to monitor the company and update this review once we have a definitive understanding of its status. If you have any information about Merchant Brokers Group (including any rebrandings or DBAs), please share it in the comment section below this review.
Merchant Brokers Group (merchantbrokersgroup.com) is a merchant account referral service operating out of Chicago, Illinois. The company claims to be an independent organization that helps merchants find the best credit card processors for their businesses, but multiple merchant complaints have suggested that Merchant Brokers Group is actually a DBA of Axxess Payments or Pivotal Payments.
Merchant Brokers Group makes no mention of either Axxess or Pivotal on its website, and it claims to be located in Chicago rather than in Canada. However, an archived version of the Merchant Brokers Group website from May 2014 lists an address at 174 Rue Montevista, Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC H9B, Canada, which is in the same province as the last known address of Axxess Payments. Additionally, complaints found here and here explicitly state that Axxess Payments has rebranded itself as Merchant Brokers Group. Complaints in this 800Notes thread also link the two companies.
The Merchant Brokers Group website states that the company is not affiliated with any specific processor, and it does not provide the names of Merchant Brokers Group’s executive leadership. We are unable to find any record of Merchant Brokers Group in the Illinois corporate database. Merchant Brokers Group lists its address as 155 North Wacker Drive, Suite 4250, Chicago, Illinois 60606.
- Sales & Marketing: Merchant Brokers Group has been accused of functioning as a referral service for Axxess Payments despite the fact that it presents itself as a third-party service.
- Costs & Contract: Merchant Brokers Group appears to offer the same contract terms as Axxess Payments.
- Complaints & Service: Merchant Brokers Group has received approximately 20 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: Merchant Brokers Group does not have a profile with the Better Business Bureau at this time.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Merchant Brokers Group
Merchant Brokers Group Customer Reviews
Here's What Their Clients Say
|Total Online Complaints||15+|
|Live Customer Support||No|
|Most Common Complaint||Aggressive Telemarketing|
We are currently able to locate approximately 20 negative Merchant Brokers Group reviews, some of which outright accuse the company of being a scam. Most complainants describe incessant sales calls from the company followed by hesitation or remorse over providing sensitive information to the salesperson. None of the complaints that have been filed mention the company’s contract terms, which lends credibility to Merchant Broker Group’s claim that it does not itself provide merchant accounts. However, it’s possible that complaints about the company’s pricing are simply posted to Axxess Payments’s online profiles. In any case, Merchant Brokers Group is showing a moderate-to-high number of complaints over what appears to be only a few years in business, which has earned it a “C” rating for this section. Merchant Brokers Group does not list customer support contact information on its website.
Merchant Brokers Group Online Ratings
Here's How They Rate Online
The Better Business Bureau maintained a profile for Merchant Brokers Group at the time of a previous review, but it has since deleted this profile. The BBB does not appear to have added Merchant Brokers Group to another company’s review as a DBA. We therefore will not factor a BBB rating into this review.
Merchant Brokers Group Fees, Rates & Costs
A Closer Look at The Contract
|Early Termination Fee||Variable|
|PCI Compliance Fee||Variable|
|Equipment Lease Terms||Variable|
According to Merchant Brokers Group, the company does not offer a standard contract; rather, it assesses a merchant’s business profile and then provides several processor recommendations to the merchant. Under this model, merchants would encounter a wide range of potential contract terms depending on which processors Merchant Brokers Group selects. In theory, these terms would be the most beneficial terms available for that merchant.
According to several complaints, Merchant Brokers Group is actually just a referral generator for Axxess Payments. If this is true, then it’s likely that the standard Merchant Brokers Group contract is similar in structure to the standard Axxess Payments contract. The standard Axxess Payments contract (available below) is a three-year term that automatically renews for two years and includes an early termination fee of $350-$650 or Liquidated Damages, depending on a merchant’s monthly sales volume. This type of contract is very unfavorable to merchants.
As a final note, we did find one Merchant Brokers Group complaint that suggests that Merchant Brokers Group reps promote a rate of 1.5% plus $0.17 per transaction in their sales calls. This quote is likely just a “Qualified” rate that omits the higher “Mid-Qualified” and “Non-Qualified” downgrade fees that merchants are likely to encounter. It’s also odd that an independent referral service would have a rate quote prepared before it has even collected a merchant’s statements.
Given the confusion about Merchant Brokers Group’s contract terms and affiliations, we have assigned it a “C” rating in this category for the time being. This rating may be subject to change as more concrete information becomes available. See the Axxess Payments Terms and Conditions.
Merchant Brokers Group Employee Reviews & Sales Tacitcs
Should You Work For Them?
|Employs Independent Resellers||Unknown|
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
Merchant Brokers Group appears to primarily market its services via telemarketing and traditional advertising. The company is the subject of multiple threads on 800Notes.com that describe persistent, aggressive sales calls in which representatives ask for sensitive business and personal information. This blog post and the comments below it describe a similar situation, as do the comments on this website. These complaints, as well as the claims found elsewhere that Merchant Brokers Group is simply a front for Axxess Payments, significantly undercut the company’s assertion that it is an independent, third-party statement review service. Regardless of its affiliation, however, the complaints that the company has received regarding its sales tactics are consistent enough to lower its grade to a “C.”
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