American Express has rolled out a new program which will
help many merchants reduce the fees they incur for Amex
acceptance. Specifically geared towards small businesses,
merchants who have been reluctant to accept Amex until
now because of the historically high rates may now wish to
reconsider that decision.
The new program, known as OptBlue, allows the merchant
processor to set the final processing rates, similar to the way
Visa, Mastercard and Discover operate. For those who have
read previous postings on merchant processing rates, Amex
has now established their own wholesale/interchange, above
which the processor can set the processing component.
But unlike VS/MC/DS, the Amex “interchange” rate is
determined by a merchant’s industry and the actual size of
the ticket being processed. For the average merchant, a sale
under $150 engenders the lowest interchange rate; for sales
between $150.01 and $3,000 a higher rate is incurred; and
for sales above $3,000 the highest interchange rate. To be
clear, the actual rate and tier varies by industry. In addition
to the wholesale rate, there are two other fees merchants
may wish to be aware of. First, Amex will also charge an
additional network fee – VS/MC/DS call this an assessment
In addition, if a card is not present and/or issued
internationally, there may be additional costs.
Only those merchants who process less than $1,000,000 in
annual Amex credit card sales are accepted into the
We can help your business lower credit card processing costs.
Additionally, all credit card proceeds are funded next day to
your bank account.We work with business owners all over the
country saving them thousands of dollars in excess
Contact IMS for more information.