# Merchant Services

#### honestmsp

Has anyone heard of a company in Charlotte, NC called 1st Americard? They setup merchant accounts, for all the plastic.

#### towngrill

A 1st Americard rep called my restaurant, to obtain an appointment last year. During the appointment interview, he informed me, that 1st Americard, could in fact save me at least \$150 monthly.

He further slammed my current provider and spent 90% of the time, telling me how bad they were, rather than convincing me of the plus-side towards choosing 1st Americard. For that one reason, I chose not to go any further.

Also, I found it rather disturbing, that 1st Americard could save me \$150+ a month; because, if my math is correct, it would be impossible.

I am on a COST-PLUS arrangement, with my merchant services provider. I've been on this type of an arrangement for well over 10 years; because, it's the smart thing to do.

For the past 5 years, I've averaged, on a monthly basis, \$31,346 in Visa, MC and Discover card sales.

The average ticket, for that same period, was/is \$16.09.

The way I calculate their impossible savings, is as follows:

\$150 savings 'divided by' \$31,346 = 0.479%

In order for them to save me \$150, monthly, they would have to show a recurring discount of 0.479%.

I am currently on a lifetime rate program, that was offered for a limited time. My rate is 0.285% & \$0.025.

\$0.025 'divided by' \$16.09 average ticket = 0.155% of the total card volume

0.285% + 0.155% = 0.44% of the total card volume.

0.44% - 0.479% = IMPOSSIBLE!

0.479% discount would in fact be impossible.

Recently, my card processing rep. lowered the discount % rate, from 0.285%, to 0.135%. That's a 0.15% discount.

\$31,346 x 12 = \$376,152 annual sales volume x 0.15% discount = \$564.23 annual savings.

I know! I know! It doesn't seem like much; but I wasn't asking, nor was I even hinting around about wanting a discount. He just gave it, as a thank you, for having referred, quite a few of my friends to him, in the past few years, of doing business with him.

A fella like this, is hard to come by.

Back to 1st Americard: Later, I learned, from a few of my Greek friends (restaurant owners) in Charlotte, NC, that 1st Americard's contract is wicked. To terminate a contract with them, you must pay the average monthly discount, paid x the remaining months left in contract. One of those friends was asked by 1st Americard, \$40,000 to terminate contract.

My advise is to stay away.

George

#### gogreek

We own 5 restaurants in charlotte and concord nc.  We have been using 1stamericard for the better part of the 1990's and since.  It sounds as if you have gone out of your way to discredit them.  OVER the top if you will.  From what I know about them for the last 20 years they are the largest processor of middle size business in the carolinas. Not the BELKS and Dillards and BestBuys but medium sized.  They have invited us to many educational events and contribute to many of the largest charities.  You should call their offices and report the individual who tried to pull the wool over your eyes.  They would not put up with it.  I am fortunate enough to know their CEO quite well.  His name is Greg Grainger and I am sure would be open for discussion.  Their # is 704-551-0999.  I will say that many companies come in and bad mouth them due to their size and competitive pricing.  You are getting about the same deal we are.  Cheers