The Green Sheet Online Edition
June 23, 2008 • Issue 08:06:02
What's in a logo?
I wondered if one of you would know where I could turn to confirm Visa Inc. and MasterCard Worldwide rules and regulations pertaining to agents using their company logos on documents such as equipment fliers. I realize all payment processing documents must have verbiage similar to the following:
ABC Co. is an agent office of the XYZ Corp. a registered ISO/MSP for First Bank of Omaha, Omaha, Neb.
But in this example, would Visa and MasterCard require XYZ's logo to be on the documents as well? Thank you for any help you may provide.
GRI Financial Services
It is our opinion that you must do business under the name of the registered ISO your company represents and that all of your collateral material must be in the name of the registered entity - not in your business name alone or in both your business name and the registered ISO's name.
This issue was addressed by Jared Isaacman, Chief Executive Officer of United Bank Card Inc. in "Card Association compliance: A reality check," The Green Sheet, March 12, 2007, issue 07:03:01. We recommend reading the entire article, but the following excerpt from a segment addressing five common misconceptions pertaining to compliance with Visa and MasterCard rules is especially appropriate:
- Second fantasy: I have a Web site showcasing my company name and logo. But at the bottom I disclose the names of the registered entity I represent and its sponsor, as well as the nature of their relationship. That disclosure is all I need.
- Reality: ISO and MLS Web sites are marketing vehicles used to reach merchants. Therefore, you cannot establish a Web site for bankcard processing in your own business name unless your business is registered. This is true even if your site provides the name of the registered entity you represent as well as its sponsoring bank.
- Third fantasy: As an MLS, I represent more than one registered ISO. I can use one Web site to do business in the name of two companies.
- Reality: You need to have two different Web sites with two different phone numbers that are each answered in the name of the respective registered ISO. You must also have two separate sets of marketing materials.
We hope this helps you in deciding what to include in your marketing materials. Please let us know if we can be of further help.
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