Merchant Industry 2023: Reviews & Complaints

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Merchant Industry
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Merchant Industry

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PhonePhone(866) 811-1005 View Pricing

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Company Overview

Merchant Industry is a merchant account provider founded in 2007 that specializes in providing credit card processing and debit card processing services to small businesses within the United States. The company also appears to do business under the name “National E-Payment, Inc.” and possibly resells the merchant services of First Data (Fiserv) and TSYS according to the company’s inclusion of those merchant account providers on its website. In May 2017, Merchant Industry launched a DBA called “Swipe4Free” that exclusively promotes a cash discount pricing program. The company also provides Apple Pay integration services to businesses.

Merchant Industry Payment Processing

Merchant Industry processes most major debit and credit cards for most business types. Their services include a wide variety of credit card terminals, mobile solutions, POS systems, QuickBooks processing, AMEX processing, gift and loyalty programs, Apple Pay, TransArmor security, data insights from Insightics, next-day funding, e-commerce solutions, cash advances, telecheck, and PCI compliance.

Location & Ownership

Merchant Industry LLC is a registered ISO/MSP of Esquire Bank N.A., Jericho, NY; and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. of Walnut Creek, California, with corporate offices at 36-36 33rd St., Suite 306, Queens, New York, 11106. Leo Vartanov is the founder and CEO of Merchant Industry.

Table of Contents

Merchant industry services

Some of the industries served by Merchant Industry.

Should You Trust Merchant Industry?

Lawsuits, Reviews & Complaints

Here's Who We Trust.

Complaint Summary

Total Online Complaints
Live Customer Support
Most Common Complaint
Sales Tactics

Moderate Complaint Total

We are currently able to locate over 40 negative Merchant Industry reviews, many of which accuse the company of being a scam or a ripoff. Common Merchant Industry complaints include deceptive sales practices, excessive billing, no follow-through on verbal agreements, difficulty canceling service, poor customer support, and expensive hidden fees. Merchant Industry has responded to some of these complaints with different solutions, sometimes offering a partial or full refund and other times insisting that the merchant is bound by his or her contract terms. Since the company appears to have a serious issue with misrepresentation by its sales agents, it does not seem helpful or especially fair to hold merchants to these contract terms. If you have your own Merchant Industry review to make, please do so below.

Merchant Industry Lawsuits and Fines

Merchant Industry was sued in 2019 for alleged violation of the TCPA, but the case was dismissed. Dissatisfied merchants who wish to pursue a non-litigious course of action against the company should consider reporting it to the relevant supervisory organizations.

Merchant Industry Customer Service Options

Merchant Industry does appear to respond effectively to publicly posted complaints about excessive or repeat billing, which is probably only a small consolation to merchants who have had to go public with these issues in the first place. Additionally, we have located some positive testimonials about Merchant Industry’s service, but these posts are of unconfirmed legitimacy. Merchant Industry offers live phone support to all merchants, but it’s clear that this channel falls short of the service offered by top-rated merchant accounts for great customer support.

We have located multiple Merchant Industry customer service numbers:

(866) 811-1005 – Toll-Free General Customer Service
(877) 841-4818 – Tech Support

Merchant Industry also offers a customer support form on its website and live chat.

Is the BBB Rating for Merchant Industry Accurate?

Better Business Bureau Profile

See Which Processors Offer No Monthly Fees And No Contracts.

BBB Summary

Total Complaints
Resolution Rate
Resolved Complaints

Note: We have adjusted this company’s BBB rating according to our own standards. To better understand why we adjust BBB ratings, please see our Rating Criteria.

2 Relevant BBB Profiles

As of this review, Merchant Industry holds an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has had 27 complaints filed within the last 36 months. The company has been accredited since May 2015. Merchant Industry’s alternate business name of National e-Payment also has a BBB page, which currently has no rating and no reviews or complaints, though at the time of a previous review, it held an “A+”. Only 9 of these 27 complaints were resolved by the company to the satisfaction of the merchant. The remaining 18 were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or received no final response.

What Merchants Say

Merchant Industry has also received 4 informal reviews to its BBB profile, 1 of which was positive and 3 of which were negative. The most recent negative review mentions being charged unexpected fees even when not using the service:

So when I signed a lease with ******(bad mistake) in 2015 they signed me up with this company. I used the machine one a week at the farmers market. We had months were we didn’t use the machine because of it being winter. They never once said anything about inactivity fees. They would never do anything about it. Our contract ended in March with ******(kept giving us the run around about the equipment) Finally in august I was able to close clover down. I assumed that since I signed with both companies at one time they would cancel both at one time. MY BAD! I haven’t used this machine for several months but yet get billed $125.00 (inactivity fees )each month. I found out that I had to cancel with this company too. I called and was told someone would call me back. I have yet to here from them. This has cost me around $900.00 so far. I guess the next thing to do is cancel my bank account. I will never work with this company,,,,

Merchants may benefit from taking the steps to understand how to negotiate rates and fees to avoid situations like this.

A “C” Performance

In light of the company’s complaint total and resolution ratio, we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to a “C.”

How Expensive is Merchant Industry Service?

Rates, Fees, and Contract Terms

Don't Fall Into An Expensive Trap. See Who The Worst Processors Are.

Cost Summary

Cancellation Penalties
Monthly & Annual Fees
Processing Rates
1.00% - 4.99%

Three-Year Contract

The standard Merchant Industry merchant agreement is a 3-year agreement through First Data (Fiserv). Though the agreement provides no specific fee structure, First Data (Fiserv) typical terms include a swiped rate of 2.69% plus $0.19 and a keyed-in rate of 3.69% plus $0.19. The Merchant Industry terms and conditions also include an early termination fee of $395 or liquidated damages (whichever is greater), a PCI Compliance fee of $79.99 per year, PCI non-compliance fees of $19.95 per month, an annual fee of $99.95, a $9.95 statement fee, and a monthly minimum fee of $25.

The company also provides equipment leases that may carry their own terms and fees. On its website, Merchant Industry dedicated a whole section to equipment leasing terms. It goes as far as to provide an interactive table of different credit card terminals and their costs. Though its website doesn’t stipulate any specific term for leases, its prices for monthly lease charges are as high as $160 per month. This means that a merchant could end up paying over $1200 for an equipment lease in only a year when a capable alternative could be purchased for under $500.

Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing

In addition to its storefront payment processing services, Merchant Industry also dedicates a portion of its website to advertising its virtual terminal and payment gateway services. However, pricing is not disclosed on either of those services. Additional rates and fees, including gateway fees, technical support fees, batch fees, and additional transaction rates typically apply to these e-commerce services.

Contract and Pricing Complaints

As of this update, there are numerous merchant complaints filed against Merchant Industry and its subsidiaries that express frustration with the company’s undisclosed costs, specifically its early termination fees and PCI Compliance fees. The company appears to enforce these charges even when they may have been deceptively presented by sales agents. Although these expenses are higher than budget-friendly merchant accounts, the company might not score so poorly in this section if these costs were more consistently disclosed to merchants upon signup. We also encourage merchants to check out our list of the providers of the best merchant accounts.

Merchant Industry credit card terminals

Part of the Merchant Industry credit card terminals section of the website

Does Merchant Industry Use Deceptive Marketing?

Advertising & Sales Strategy

Audit Your Current Statement To Find Its Hidden Fees

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Key Points

Employs Independent Resellers
Advertises Deceptive Rates
Discloses All Important Terms

Outside Sales Team

Merchant Industry appears to rely on numerous sub-ISOs and independent sales agents to market its services. There is evidence that the company operates under multiple business names and allows its resellers to use the Merchant Industry name at their various locations, which causes some merchant confusion. We are currently able to locate numerous Merchant Industry reviews that describe nondisclosure and misrepresentation by the company’s sales agents, higher Merchant Industry fees than were agreed to upon signup, and failure by the company’s sales team to deliver on promises made at the point of signing. This does not compare favorably to our list of best credit card processors.

ETF Payment Promises

One major issue appears to be multiple agents claiming to pay a merchant’s early termination fees and cancel their account with their existing processor if they switch over to Merchant Industry. In many cases, these agents do not follow through on either guarantee, leaving their clients subject to continuing monthly payments and the full early termination fee upon cancellation.

Incomplete Rate Quotes

The company’s website includes multiple tables and charts advertising various Merchant Industry rates and fees. In all cases, the company’s “Qualified” rate is prominently shown, while its “Non-Qualified” surcharge is accompanied by the claim that “most clients do not experience these fees.” This is not true, and we consider this type of rate quoting to be deceptive because it may lead merchants to have unrealistic expectations of the rates they will pay. In addition, Merchant Industry rates list many types of fees common to the industry and claim that, while it’s average for merchant services providers to charge all of these fees, Merchant Industry does not charge them (or charges them at a reduced price). The company does not mention several other large, common fees that it does charge, such as PCI compliance fees and early termination fees.

A “D” Rating

Overall, it is our opinion that the company’s rate and fee quotes are deceptively presented, and there are multiple merchant complaints supporting this interpretation. If you believe that Merchant Industry is overcharging you, we recommend seeking a third-party statement audit to eliminate hidden fees.

Merchant Industry ISO

Merchant Industry goes so far as to prominently advertise its ISO program on its website

Does Merchant Industry Deserve Your Business?

Review Summary & Our Thoughts

A Low-Rated Option for All Businesses

Merchant Industry rates as a substandard merchant services provider according to all available information. Merchants are reporting a consistent pattern of deceptive practices from the company’s sales agents, and the company’s contract terms are more expensive than industry averages. These issues have resulted in the company receiving a moderate-to-high complaint rate for its size and time in business, and the company’s public responses to these complaints have not demonstrated any serious commitment to customer service. For now, merchants can expect to be better served by a top-rated merchant account provider.

Customer & Employee Reviews

What Others Are Saying About Merchant Industry

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29 Responses

  • Brian

    Horrible company. Stay away from them. Their customer service is horrible. If you are a current customer look at your statements carefully. They’ll sneak fees on it and when you call them to complain they will tell you it’s not from them, though luck. But when you call to cancel your account magically they can fix it. Really.

  • Adiel Huck

    Nothing but positive thing to say about Merchant Industry. They have saved us money while streamlining our point of sale process. We no longer have to wait several days for our cash to be available. Best move we could have made.

  • Dominic Caglione

    Slime of the earth. Company that charges cancellation fees that are about 10X the national average. Talk about bad business practices. Their staff is rude as hell too.

  • yaqu bearnest

    I switched to Merchant Industry because I was losing business by my inability to process small sales. Now I can take a debit or credit card for a small amount without losing money. In the produce business when your average sales is around $10. 00, this really helped. I have been very pleased by the fast availability of funds.

    • CPO


      Hi Yaqu,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  • Jack David

    Excellent merchant processing company. My business falls into the category of high risk. After providing additional information about my business the opened my account. My sales rep was very helpful walking me through the entire process. The rates are good and the virtual terminal is awesome.

    • CPO


      Hi Jack,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and testimonial in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  • Bora E

    This company is very frauduant. I have tried to get them to stop charging my business, but they continue to make unauthorized charges. I have tried to contact them more than 100 times!! they always answer they are reviewing. if you work with this company, you will see your business money will be out of your pocket every day.

    This post will help: Cancelling a Merchant Account Without Paying a Fee


  • Amy Bove

    There are multiple reasons to opt for Merchant Industry. From their approval rate and fast turnaround, to their customized processing solutions and state-of-the-art equipment, they offer tons of benefits and cater to multiple types of businesses. Whether your business is online or in-store, it’s likely they’ll be able to provide the right solution for your payment and processing needs.

  • Roman Winfeld

    I read some of these review and I was concerned. But their price was so good that I took a chance anyway. I couldn’t be happier that I did. I have a store and also an online option to sell my goods and they took care of setting up both. When I had an issue with my machine they were responsive and took care of it right away. Even when I called on a weekend. They are solid in my mind 100%.

    • CPO


      Hi Roman,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your review. Thanks!

  • Amy

    I could not be happier with the experience I had with Merchant industry. From the first conversation, I was very impressed with the level of professionalism and the the time the team took to answer all questions and inquiries so that I could grow my business. Equally impressive was the customer care experience after making the decision to proceed on with Merchant Industry. The service provided was above and beyond my expectations. I encourage any and all small to medium sized companies to reach out and work with this amazing team!!!

    • CPO


      Hi Amy,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  • Rise Up Boards

    They are an awful company and you should stay far away from them. First I signed with Global payment Solutions who it turns out is at the same office as Merchant Industry. they promise low fees at first but if its to good to be true it is. global locks you into Merchant Industry who then locks you into a 3 year contract. I couldn’t process credit cards and wanted out of the company. they will charge me with almost $3,000 of early termination fees. In the meantime they will be charging for about $50 a month for no services. Their customer service, machinery is just horrible. Run away from this awful company. If you did get scammed call local law enforcement.

    From The Editor
    This Post Might Help: Cancelling a Merchant Account Without Paying a Fee

    • Charles Palumbo

      Terrible terrible company stay away

  • doug barrett

    Run from this business! I’ve attempted to resolve issue’s for months for our e-commerce business without any success. Good luck trying to communicate with them as well. You can email them on every issue and beg for a response and you still get ZERO response. I was sent to them by a third party and and now I’m looking at switching because these guys simply don’t care! Sean Puri sent me a new contract back in March 2018 stating new rates and just sign. We signed and we are still being charged the old rates even as of this writing. When asked about our rates Paul informed me that Sean didn’t have us sign the correct documents so he did send them.They put our parent companies name on the credit card report so now I’ve been flooded with customers calling stating they didn’t purchase anything from that company. This has also led to three charge-backs at $35. per charge which is totally their fault however they seem unable to make this change which I’ve asked since March/April 2018 time frame.
    I’ve dealt with Nafisa Sanchez, Paul Kanevsky and Sean Puri and all three don’t seem to care about fixing it.
    SO IF YOUR LOOKING FOR A CREDIT CARD PROCESSOR RUN FROM THIS COMPANY! I’d say that one could accuse them of being a scam or ripoff as your under contract for one rate however they charge you another.
    I’ve given them sufficient time frame to fix their mistakes and even just yesterday I asked them for feedback on the over charges on our invoice which I sent to the three names above and as of this writing NONE of the three even cared to state they received my email.
    I’m even moving towards talking with my attorney on this issue about them as we’re now talking about a decent amount of cash in fee’s they really owe me for overbilling.
    If I could give zero star rating I would have. Just look at all the other people who have given them exceptionally bad reviews. You think they have a problem!

  • Marjorie Hollingshead

    I am so glad I found this page. I made a mistake and called this company thinking I was calling my bank BB&T. I was trying to return a machine that was sent to me by my bank. The sales Rep deceived me into thinking I was talking with BB&T. He asked for my merchant number and when he realized that it was not their service he switched my Merchant number to their companie’s service, Instead of telling me that I had called them by mistake. He then asked me to return the bb&t Merchant Service machine to them, now they are saying they do not have the machine. I have contacted the CEO of their company and a lawyer in NYC. I have put together a case along with recordings of the deception. They did not tell me that they have a 30-90 day cancellation policy. They also tried to get me to cancel with BB&T and promised to pay the cancellation fees. I am very disappointed and cannot believe that this is happening. I am going to fight to see how far I can go to stop this from happening to anyone else. Is there a class action suit out there on these people? I am being threatened by them to pay $750.00 cancellation Fees.The sales Representative is Spencer and the Manager is Paul.

    • Lee

      Its June 2018 , called to get credit card machine download to use their company in January 2018.
      All they have managed to do is lie about the services ai would get and the cost.
      They downlaided the machine finally in May , but did not include the EBT account which is why I really needed this anyway . Then said my machine wouldnt work ( its brand new) but they never tried to redownload . They then said I needed to by a machine and the cost added up to almost 2000.00 for a (200.00 machine).
      I was like I Am not buying a machine .
      I asked to just cancel and forget it , Then I was told it would cost 700.00 early termination fee , FOR WHAT YOU DID NOT PROVIDE ME WITH THE SERVICE . However they did deduct 34.98 x 6 months for inactivity fee , which the Account Manager said specifically that the only charges i would have was when i swiped a card, so he lied from day one. Inactivity fee , that is ridiculous when I could not use the machine . I lost that money , the money Inpaid fir the machine , as well as the business just from EBT alone , approximately 1200.00 more dollars .
      I have called called and called , no reply .
      The time someone answered warned me this conversation is being recorded, ok good then pull all the conversations I had with Craig , help desk and finially Morgan the retention specialist. She was going to help me get it all straight , That was going on 2 weeks ago , and she hasn’t returned any of my calls.
      I am done with these people .
      Horrible , the way they took advantage of me and my company.

  • Jason Weindruch

    DO NOT do business with this company. They are literally white collar criminals: Sean Puri and Bill Grey are unethical and have zero customer service skills.

  • Maria

    stay away from this company it is the worst I’ve known. if you have a small business they do not help you grow. i canceled my account but they still charging even without activity, when I called they told me that since the day i canceled it takes a month to make the cancellation effective but in the meantime they still charge you.

    • paul moore

      Maria is correct! This company is a total scam! The salesperson misrepresented the program and when I talked to the supervisor she just said “that is in the past”.
      They are criminals.

  • JessicaDon

    I was promised a one year contract with this new service, Terence Gumbs was my account manager and did a very poor job at that. I would leave several messages for him and never would get a response. Would finally have to call someone else to get my issues taken care of. Because of his lack of duty with this company they lost our credit card processing services and then have decided that they will charge me the 300 early termination, even after he assured me multiple times that we only had a 1 year contract with them. Once i was digging around tryin to find out when my one year contract was up, the date they gave me was a month later than when I actually signed the paperwork. I was just fed up with them and ready to do business with someone I know i can trust and will take care of me. so very disguisted with this company really from day 1. They hit me with an early termination fee yet they still dont show that i have cancelled my acct. REALLY???

  • Jessie M. Cass

    Merchant Industry really came through for me when I needed them the most. I am a start up business owner and I needed to get all of my accounting in order as well as be able to process credit cards. I called and they provided a free credit card terminal and have the best service including cash advance if we need it. I was blown away; it just doesn’t get any better than this. It has been a great help.

    • Phillip CPO

      Jessie (or Justin Clark according to you email address),

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  • Al

    Merchant Industry as well as ” Statewide Merchant” “Bank card” is the one takes your money from your bank account. they get you confused there. They gave me a contract of $39.00 dollars a month plus .3 visa and other card charges. I did around $780.00 on a credit card transaction and got a $195.00 fee!!!!
    then They never paid the first company which charged me early termination fee and e maid me they can only pay $25.00 per a month . I canceled them and so far they took $250 and another $200.00 dollars out of my bank.
    I kept all the e-mails and looking to find the way give them back the stress and get my hard working money back.
    they are just a big scam even 100 dollars from one person think 20,000,000 people fall in to their trap. that is a lot of money which they earn with dishonesty. Some one will sue them big in future.

  • ThomasFisher

    I needed to accept credit cards for my business and I wasn’t sure which equipment would be best for me. I called Merchant Industry in New York and they couldn’t have been more helpful. We discussed my business and what would save me the most amount of money. After comparing rates and fees with other providers, it was a no brainer. These guys are hands down the best that I found and I still use them today. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

    • Phillip CPO

      Hi Thomas,

      In order to verify this testimonial, please add a reply to this comment with you business name and location.

  • JamieR

    Absolute worst merchant card processing company I have had the unfortunate misfortune to deal with. Promised a lot of really great deals. Guaranteed a savings of $150 a month over my then current company. In actuality it cost me $150-$200 more per month. Promised free debit machine tape. Yes, after calling three different people I finally got the paper 4 weeks later and a whole 5 rolls of paper. I would have to call every 2 days in order to keep us in free paper. It was impossible to reach my rep. I left several messages regarding what I thought were overcharges. I never got a call back from my rep. I finally spoke with a different rep who did indeed acknowledge I had been overcharged. Promised to look at my account in more detail and call be back the next day. She never called me back and I have yet to see the credit. I was guaranteed next day batch deposits. However all deposits hit my account 2 to 3 days after I closed the batch. They then started charging extra fees. I had enough and began the process of severing the contract. I gave them their 10 day notice in writing. I closed my account in October and received an automatic deduction out of my account for $780 in early November as a one time cancellation fee. I again received another automatic deduction for $58.49 in December. I have since refused that ACH charge and am taking steps ensure they can not continue to take money from the account. I have read from others in my same position the only way to stop this from happening is to close my checking account. These guys are the worst and I HIGHLY RECOMMEND anyone looking to do business with these guys to think twice and say NO.

    • mars wong

      how you find the solution at the end? will they refund you the termination fee since they did not honor what the promised you from the contract? I have the same issues with this company, they promised a lot of things and signed the contract, they keep overcharged me every month, they said I have saved more than $150 every month if I switched to them but ended up I paying even more than what I was paying. They are just scam


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Phillip Parker
Credit Card Processors
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