The terminals work on a pre-paid basis which means retailers charge them with credit by paying cash deposits into their bank, or advance direct debit. Multepay then pays out a monthly 5.5% commission.
Jack Bansal, who runs Favers supermarket in Slough, Berkshire paid £300 plus VAT for a terminal a year ago. Since he last paid in £1,400 in April, he hasn’t been able to use the top-up service.
A recorded message at Multepay tells retailers that due to circumstances beyond its control, the firm is no longer able to provide an e-top up service. It adds: “However, we are in talks with an alternative provider and aim to contact all our retailers as soon as possible. Any commission due to you will be paid as normal.”
But according to Companies House, Multepay Holdings, based in Bournemouth, Dorset recently went into liquidation.
Jack can still process credit card payments through the terminal but has not received his usual £500 monthly commission. He fears he has also lost the £1,400. He said: “I’ve been two months without a top-up service. I was doing about £10,000 in sales a month but this has dropped away. Now I finally have an alternative machine, I’m begging customers to come back. There must be hundreds of other retailers in a similar position.”
Multepay was launched in 2002 and aimed to have 10,000 units in retail outlets within four years. Last March, wholesalers such as Batleys, Blakemores, United, Sher Bros and JW Gray stocked the system, while a promotion at Makro offered customers £100 free top-up voucher credit with any Multepay terminal.