iCheckGateway.com got its start at a dining room table in Lexington, Ky., when co-founders Jason Estes and Chris Hall envisioned a simple, secure and virtual way to accept credit cards and ACH payments. Their platform processed its first transaction in 2009.
Over time, ICG expanded its suite of customized technologies to help referral partners protect and future-proof their customers' businesses through the company's all-in-one payment platform. As a Nacha preferred partner, ICG provides the necessary security to keep sensitive data out of PCI scope and within Nacha compliance mandates for credit cards, debit cards, ACH, Check 21 and remote deposit capture (RDC) transactions, according to company representatives.
"We enable partners to lead with technology instead of price, gain access to technically sophisticated opportunities and guard against attrition with deep integration hooks," Estes said. "Retaining a merchant with technology provides a longer-lasting revenue stream and extends your merchants network. Our suite of solutions includes email invoicing and custom payment portals that help merchants maintain compliance and stay out of PCI scope."
Estes and Hall find that their open-door management style keeps them connected to day-to-day operations. As chief executive officer, Estes oversees technology, accounting, compliance and marketing departments; as chief operations officer, Hall keeps watch over sales, underwriting and support. The executives credit their close ties with employees and partners and leading-edge technology as key contributors to the company's expansion and growth.
"ICG's nimble ability to customize solutions for merchants gives us a competitive edge," Estes said. "We help ISO and ISV partners win deals by offering a customized business-hosted payment portal or iFrame, integrated mobile technology, email and SMS invoicing, connecting terminals with custom IVR solutions and offering a variety of QuickBooks and ecommerce shopping cart integrations."
Estes added that ICG supports businesses of all sizes in 49 states and has completed direct certification projects with leading payment processors, including Elavon, First Data/Fiserv, TSYS/Global Payments and Worldpay/FIS. ICG is a Nacha Preferred Partner for ACH solutions and automation. The company has also partnered and integrated with Plaid to provide an alternative solution to merchants who want more insight into their customers' ACH transactions before processing them.
ICG's customized, hosted payment portals and iFrame technology solutions are easy to integrate into checkout and billing processes, and the ICG cash discount program offers considerable savings when consumers pay by ACH online, Estes noted. ICG's downloadable Pay app, available in Android and iOS, integrates with POS systems and is designed to enable merchants to reach customers across all channels. Additional custom integrations support email and SMS invoicing as well as PCI-compliant interactive voice response (IVR) systems that allow customers to securely transact by phone.
"All of our solutions are customized with secure encrypted technology to keep merchants out of PCI scope," Estes said. "And with services like check verification with ICG Verify enable consumers and business owners to complete account validation for ACH transactions while adhering to the latest Nacha compliance rules and standards."
As he looked ahead at the company's near-term road map, Estes said he expects ICG to continue to build out its technology suite. Efforts will include enhancing its virtual terminal to help partners monitor their merchants' processing volumes and transaction counts, as well as continuing to create secure, innovative solutions in the ever-changing payments sphere.
"Current technology trends reflect the financial industry's growing need for ecommerce and software integrations," Estes said. "Our partners and their merchants will benefit as ACH takes its rightful role in helping financial institutions and industry sectors. Our solutions serve a variety of industries, including loan servicing, insurance, utility and healthcare billing software vendors, nonprofits and religious organizations, municipalities, advertising agencies and online trade publications and more."
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