This past week we had the privilege of interviewing the wonderful and talented Suneera Madhani, CEO and founder of Fattmerchant, an exciting business that allows other businesses to capitalize on their profit by offering a service that allows for direct access to the true cost of credit card processing. Rather than pay the often high markups, fees, and additional services banks and other merchant service providers offer, Fattmerchant cuts that cost out to let you focus those funds where you need them most. We asked Suneera to give us some more information about this interesting concept.
Tell us about your business/for purpose organization (how long have you been in business, what is your specialty, products or services, how many employees you have, etc.):
I used to be an agent working for all of the major banks selling merchant services. I quickly realized how clouded and, quite frankly, tainted the industry was with an inordinate amount of excess fees, an overall lack of transparency, and a lack of personal customer service as well. Fattmerchant has eliminated these overages and handcuffs by opening up direct cost to all merchants, regardless of size, so they pay no markups, no ancillary fees, and no contract, all for a flat monthly membership. Not only do we save our members an average of 40% on their processing while providing them the equipment or software for free, but we pride ourselves and giving them “the best damn service” as well.
We have a full suite of solutions to accommodate every business need – from mobile readers, to online shopping carts, EMV terminals, POS integration, our proprietary virtual terminal – we do it all.
Fattmerchant has been in business for over a year now, but it was really within the last nine months that our baby was born. We brought it to market toward the end of 2014 and have been growing significantly since then. We have a team of 14 now, and are expected to grow closer to 20 or so by years end.
What makes your company/organization leaders in your industry?
Transparency, service and technology. One of my favorite testimonials we’ve received is that “Fattmerchant is bringing integrity back into merchant services.” I love this; this is our credo. We are disrupting the industry with a subscription-based model that not only puts thousands of dollars back into the bottom lines of SMBs around the U.S., but for the first time a merchant is fully educated on the process, they can read their statements, they know exactly what they’re paying every month, and they know they never have to worry about negotiating rates again. We keep them educated on payment trends, liability shifts, compliance, whatever it is on the payment processing side so they can just focus on running their business. We pride ourselves on delivering “the best damn service.”
When our members call in, there’s always a voice to the phone – they aren’t bouncing around a 1-800 number and they know they can always call us to help with any questions they may have. My favorite part, though, is the technology. Our bread and butter is payment processing, but we are really developing into a payment technology company. We constantly search for the newest, sexiest, most efficient processing solutions for our members – not the least of which is a proprietary virtual terminal we developed ourselves.
Who or what has influenced you (book, movie, person, other company/for purpose organization)?
I am influenced and inspired by so many around me: friends, family, mentors. Of course there are figures in business that I admire, whether it be Mark Cuban for his entrepreneurism or Marissa Mayer for being a woman holding C-suite positions and making strides in a competitive space, but someone I’ve really come to admire is Sophia Amoruso. Sophia is the founder of Nasty Gal, and what I love about her story is that she started from the ground up to grow what she has today. Her book “#GIRLBOSS,” is an awesome read and the lessons within it are inspirational as well. One I identify with is “The only way to support a revolution is to make your own.” That is why I started Fattmerchant … we are here to be a catalyst for change in an industry that has been completely stagnant and ripping off small business owners for years.
What key qualities do you look for in your employees/team?
We look for people with proactiveness, a strong work ethic and a good sense of humor. We need team members that will roll up their sleeves to do work, and who are constantly striving to do more and do better. I think someone who receives feedback well is a must, as we have an open communication team. But hands down, we need team members that mesh with our culture. We’re a loud, fun, energetic group in a fast paced environment so we need people that can keep up.
Words of advice for others growing their business/for purpose organization?
I’ll give you both the “gas” and the “breaks” answers, starting with the “breaks.” It’s important to validate a need in the marketplace for the idea that you may have, but I have such a Nike philosophy and tell people to just do it! There will always be reasons NOT to do something, or things that will make it challenging, but you just need to keep tunnel vision toward the goal, surround yourself by a supportive and motivating team, and make it happen. My favorite quote from Sophia Amoruso is “you create your world, blink by blink.” I wholeheartedly believe that. If you want something, make it happen.
What is your website so people can learn more about this incredible service?