Community Bankers Merchant Services, Inc.

Community Bankers Merchant Services, Inc.

City: Springdale
Category: Category I (1-25 Employees)
Year: 2013

Community Bankers Merchant Services has established a profitable 22-year legacy as a family business.

The Springdale enterprise partners with 400 community banks around the nation to provide merchant services for their commercial customers.

About 80 percent of the company's business is devoted to processing credit card transactions. CBMS pays banks a percentage of the revenue collected and assumes all the risk and liability.

"A good partnership is where everybody wins," said Dean Morris, vice president of sales and marketing. "We try to create that."

CBMS has enjoyed double-digit growth since 2006 despite a market niche visited by ever-tightening margins. Revenue during 2012 totaled $3.5 million.

In an industry dominated by giants, Community Bankers Merchant Services touts itself as the largest credit card processor based in Arkansas. The company doesn't back away from the jostle for business amid scores of rivals, armed with a policy to meet or beat competing offers.

"We try to be a one-stop shop: issuing cards, processing transactions and handling envelopes and monthly statements," Morris said. "We've had no security breach of any kind. Not everybody can say that."

The venture marked the third career move by his father, Bobby, who started the company in 1990 in Shreveport. His entry in the merchant services business was a year earlier as an independent sales rep working for Card Services International.

Morris moved CMBS and his family to northwest Arkansas in 1996. Today, operations are supported by a staff of 10 and a satellite office in Orlando, Fla.

The company prides itself on its slogan: "Practicing the lost art of customer service."

"We live this every day and truly practice what we preach," Morris said. "We admit our mistakes and shortcomings and forge ahead with our strengths. As a family-owned company, we answer to the customer, not a board or investors. We work hard to treat our customers as we want to be treated, knowing at the end of the day, that is what has allowed us to grow."

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