ANZ Worldline will once again provide payment processing services to the firearms industry, according to the Shooting Industry Foundation of Australia (SIFA).
The payment services provider came into a barrage of flak late last year, shortly after the merger of ANZ and Worldline, when it cut off online payment processing services to firearm businesses.
The provider advised businesses at the time that its Payment Solutions policy and Card Scheme Rules “strictly prohibit the sale of weapons online to ensure that customers who purchase weapons attend in-store to provide appropriate licence and permits checks, as is required by relevant laws”.
While not a particularly good policy for firearm businesses, it was made worse by ANZ Worldline essentially cutting off all online sales processing for firearms businesses, even for non-gun or ammunition items.
This was a potentially disastrous outcome for many businesses, especially as more than half the firearms businesses in Australia are mixed retailers, particularly in rural and regional areas, and sell a great many products besides guns and ammunition — for example, fishing equipment, 4WD parts, workwear and or general convenience store products.
The bank’s stance was slammed by SIFA, Shooters Union and other industry groups.
However, following productive conversations between SIFA and ANZ Worldline, the payment processing provider has confirmed it will once again offer online services to firearms businesses.
SIFA reports it has received a letter advising: “I am pleased to advise you that our joint venture partner, ANZ Worldline Payment Solutions, continues to provide merchant facilities to ANZ customers in the firearms retail industry. In some cases this includes a combination of card-present and card-not-present services.
“However, ANZ Worldline Payment Solutions reserves the right not to offer these services to customers that do not meet their terms and conditions. As is the case with any merchant, regardless of industry, each merchant’s application is assessed on a case-by-case basis.
“ANZ values the relationship with our regional and rural customers including the businesses that are members of SIFA.”
SIFA CEO James Walsh took the opportunity to thank ANZ CEO Shayne Elliott and ANZ Worldline CEO Petr Ryska for listening to the industry’s position and resuming essential payment services to affected businesses.
“We also acknowledge and thank the shooting community who got behind our campaign and made representations to ANZ and ANZ Worldline, as well as Roy Bulter MP who made representations on behalf of affected businesses and worked with SIFA to achieve this outcome,” he said.
The full media release from SIFA is here.