Complete Merchant Solutions Resolves All Issues with Federal Trade Commission

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Final Resolution Clears the Way for CMS to Continue to Provide Best-in-Class Technology and Service to Its Customers

Complete Merchant Solutions (“CMS”) has reached agreement with the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) to resolve all outstanding issues, including CMS’s lawsuit against the FTC alleging that the FTC had exceeded its authority and the FTC’s investigation against CMS, which focused on business practices relating to three merchants that CMS serviced between 2010 and 2016.

“The FTC’s complaint focused on three of CMS’s prior clients,” said David Decker, Chief Executive Officer of CMS. “Four years ago CMS stopped providing services for these three merchants. Moreover, these merchants’ businesses represent only 0.2% of the merchants and 0.5% of the total volume of payments CMS has processed over 12 years. During this time, CMS served more than 14,000 merchants processing billions of dollars in payments. Since our inception, CMS has built an organization with a culture of strong compliance, operational and financial controls and has on many occasions declined business from certain merchants.”

CEO Decker continued: “CMS determined, however, that this resolution is in the best interest of CMS and our customers. We will continue to leverage technology to provide best in class compliance and fraud prevention tools. We value our reputation as an innovative and trusted player in the payments industry. We are pleased to have reached an agreement with the FTC. Resolving this matter allows us to remain focused on serving our clients and their customers with excellence.”

CEO Decker concluded: “CMS has a 12-year record of innovating in the electronic payment industry while creating an environment of trust for its customers, partners, and employees. The people of CMS look forward to continuing to build on that record.”

Under the resolution of all claims with the FTC, CMS agreed to drop its lawsuit against the FTC alleging that the FTC had exceeded its authority and the FTC agreed to drop its claims against CMS. In turn, CMS agreed to further enhance its compliance program by putting in place additional oversight and monitoring activities for certain categories of merchants, many of which the company had implemented even before the settlement, not to provide services to merchants that market or sell nutraceutical products on a “free trial” basis (which is consistent with the company’s current practices), and to pay $1.5 million to the FTC.

CMS works closely with its banks and other processing partners to implement and continuously update industry and bank-driven risk policies, directives and best practices. The results of these efforts are evidenced by CMS’s low chargeback rates — a measure of disputed transactions that Visa and MasterCard use to gauge the quality of players in the payment processing industry — which at 0.25% have been below both industry averages and the thresholds imposed by Visa and MasterCard for the past several years.

The settlement also resolves all issues between the FTC and Jack Wilson, who served as CMS’s CEO from 2009 to 2016. In the settlement, neither Wilson nor CMS admitted to any of the allegations made by the FTC.

About Complete Merchant Solutions
Complete Merchant Solutions is a full-service electronic payments solutions provider for over 5,600 merchants. CMS facilitates electronic payment processing for all major credit and debit cards, gift and loyalty cards, ACH, remote deposit capture as well as other non-cash payment methods. CMS’ innovative, customizable solutions include a wide variety of integrated point-of-sale software, terminals and machines, e-commerce and wireless payment processing solutions. CMS also provides merchants a suite of tools to help them run and grow their businesses, including fraud prevention, reporting, and international processing capabilities. CMS was founded in 2008 and is based in Orem, Utah.

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Lisa Cohen
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