Thousands of SMEs still without working eftpos terminals, as Tyro outage stretches into fifth week

NPP Australia

More than 2,000 small businesses are still affected by Tyro’s payment terminal outage, which has now entered its fifth week.

There were 1,490 merchants missing one fully operational terminal, 486 merchants without an operational terminal and 643 merchants with terminal types no longer manufactured, as of Tyro’s latest ASX update.

The service outage, which caused card payment terminals to be locked, began on January 5.

Tyro since launched a program to collect the locked terminals either by couriers or post, so they could be repaired and then returned to small businesses.

As the outage enters its second month, small businesses without working terminals continue to voice their frustration on social media.

“Finally terminal was collected, but only 1 has materialised again, health terminal still outstanding, one month on,” one customer said yesterday on Facebook.

“This is BS my terminal was 4 months old and I’m still waiting for the upgrade,” another customer said.

Tyro said in a statement last Thursday it would not charge merchants terminal rental for the month of January if their terminals were linked to an impacted merchant ID.

The payments company also said the 643 merchants with outdated terminal types will be sent new terminals at no additional monthly cost.

Many small businesses adopted alternative card payment readers by Square, as they waited for their Tyro terminals to be repaired.

Kevin Lay, the owner of Bellocale Italian Seafood Restaurant in Cairns, told SmartCompany he purchased a $59 Square reader from Officeworks after he could not accept card payments for two days.

Other merchants sought legal advice with Sydney-based law firm Bannister Law, which announced 10 days into the outage that it would investigate potential claims against Tyro Payments Limited on behalf of affected businesses.

The outage has been a defining moment for the ASX-listed fintech, which halted its shares trading on the ASX to prevent trades occurring in what it called “an uninformed market”.

The two-day pause in trading was in response to a short seller report by Viceroy Research, which claimed Tyro had underestimated the effects of its service outage to shareholders.

When Tyro resumed trading on January 19, it responded to Viceroy Research’s claims in a statement on the ASX outlining 10 points as to why the report was incorrect.

Tyro is the largest provider of eftpos services outside of the big four banks, providing services to more than 32,000 small-to-medium businesses.

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