A few retailers have been in touch regarding photocopy firm Ezeecopy. They tell me they are part of a support group of more than 40 small businesses who are at various stages of dispute with the company. They have approached the Financial Ombudsman over their cases, which they tell me have been upheld.
They have also approached the Financial Conduct Authority over what they regard as Ezeecopy’s unfair contract. They took this action because Ezeecopy has previously confirmed in print it is authorised and regulated by the FCA.
One of the retailers, Sajaad Yasin, who runs Penarth Post Office in South Wales, wrote to the FCA: “Why are you endorsing this agreement? Ezeecopy are scamming so many of us. Most are on the verge of bankruptcy, including myself if they are allowed to continue. I will be making my MP aware as well.”
The FCA replied with a lot of advice and said: “In our role as the regulator of the UK’s financial markets we must remain impartial and this means we don’t provide regulated financial products or services or agreements ourselves, and we also don’t endorse services or agreements offered by the firms we authorise and regulate. We therefore do not endorse the agreement provided by Ezeecopy Ltd.”
The FCA pointed out that firms authorised and regulated by them had to treat their customers fairly, communicate information to them in a way which is clear, fair and not misleading.
Although the FCA cannot intervene in individual cases it does have supervisory teams to ensure that the rules are being followed. It said that Sajaad’s concerns had been logged and shared with the supervisory team.
The wording you see is in the detail. Ezeecopy is authorised and regulated; not endorsed.