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BC Business - Right Place At The Right Time

Connect Cash Services keeps clients' cash flowing through it's commitment to service

You’re frequenting a local nightclub, enjoying the sights, sounds and entertainment on offer. You reach for your wallet to patronize the bar only to find no bills tucked within its folds. So, you head to the ATM next to the lobby for enough cash to grab a beverage or two and leave a nice tip for your friendly bartender. If this scenario sounds familiar, you've likely used one of the dozens of ATMs Connect Cash Services (CCS) has deployed across the Lower Mainland. With almost 20 years of experience under its belt, CCS is the province’s largest provider of private ATMs and adjacent services. With major clients like the Great Canadian Gaming Corp. (operators of River Rock Casino and the Hard Rock Casino), downtown Vancouver’s Edgewater Casino and Cactus Clubs across Canada, many cash-hungry customers have likely used a well-serviced CCS machines without realizing it. The lengthy history of the ATM provider is intermingled with the career of its founder and CEO Farhad Walji. After spending the better part of a decade working his way up the corporate ladder at the Royal Bank of Canada, Walji made the move to start his own business in 1998. And with that drive, his financial knowledge and a single cash machine, Connect Cash Services was born. During the time CCS was a just one-man operation, it was Walji’s commitment to prompt, attentive service that won over increasingly prestigious businesses. His determination and integrity set him apart from others in the industry, and clients quickly took notice. 

”Being relentless in the pursuit of my dreams while remaining loyal and maintaining my professional integrity have been key in the continued success of this company,” he says. That long-term dedication to service is still the main mission at CCS—that’s what differentiates them from competitors. Walji and the rest of the team pride themselves on operating its business with integrity, particularly in an industry where exploitative deals can be the norm. He’s a firm believer that “slow and steady wins the race,” when it comes to scaling his company and his team of skilled professionals, which allows CCS to continue to offer industry leading response times.

“The newly appointed, carefully selected CCS team members have been instrumental in ensuring we remain competitive in the white-label ATM market,” Walji says. “Our meticulous hiring practices and scaling plan have well prepared us to acquire significantly larger clients and has already allowed us to exceed our own goals.”

What Canadian Restaurant Owners Need to Know About ATMs

Restaurants Canada Blog
Owning your own ATM may sound like a good choice, since it lets you keep all the profits. But to make an informed decision, you need to be aware of the downsides, too.

Let’s start with some common misconceptions:

ATM providers primarily sell the hardware (the machine itself)
Fact – There are three main options when selecting your ATM setup:

A turnkey solution where a provider looks after all aspects of the functioning of the ATM on your behalf.
A more hands-on approach in which the provider maintains and monitors the machine, but you load your own cash.
Ownership of the ATM, where you load and maintain the machine yourself.
Advice – A turnkey solution is often the best choice as it removes the work of operating and maintaining the machine. Find out up front if your ATM provider will charge for supplies (such as paper rolls, cartridge replacements, card readers and screens) and administer fees (including statement and monthly monitoring fees).

It’s easy to own and load your own ATM
Fact – Before plugging in your machine, you need to complete a background check, set up a business bank account, register with a processing company, and get certified with Interac, Visa and Mastercard.
Advice – Let the qualified ATM providers deal with this on your behalf.

The surcharge is set by the ATM provider or by the banks
Fact – You should be able to negotiate when setting a surcharge.
Advice – An unwillingness to negotiate the surcharge is often a red flag.

An ATM contract automatically expires at the end of the contract term
Fact – This isn’t always true.
Advice – If you aren’t sure, ask for a trial period with no contractual obligations. If your representative implies you should feel fortunate to offer this service to your customers without financial benefit to you, alarm bells should be going off. If they don’t offer a split or a commission on the surcharge, look elsewhere.

A local company should give you a more efficient service, whether it’s a cash-loading schedule, a technical issue, a maintenance call or a sales call. Out-of-province ATM providers may use a third-party armoured car service to load cash and service your ATM. This may mean a loss of potential income if your machine is out of service in peak hours.

How long have they been in business?
Do they have an office you can visit?
Do they have full-time service and office staff?
Will a sales person meet you in person?
Will a sales person offer you a site analysis for optimal placement of the ATM?
Do they research the existing competitors near your business?
Do they offer web reports?
Do they have live after-hours tech support?
Will a certified technician install your machine and offer training for trouble-shooting common issues?


Don’t be afraid of change. Do you know what your current provider is actually offering you? Is it fair? Does it align with your business needs? Take back control of the ATM real estate in your business.
Only do business with providers that offer clear communication and answer your questions in a forthcoming manner.
Look for an ATM provider that emphasizes knowledge, integrity, and flexible service, and that evolves with the needs of your business.

CHRISTINA PROKOP brings 20 years of experience to her role as Director of Sales at Connect Cash. Christina strives for excellence throughout her sales process and consistently exceeds her client’s expectations.

Resources: According to a survey conducted by the Canadian Banker’s Association,

“18 per cent of Canadians report that they conduct the majority of their financial transactions at ABMs
There are over 65,000 bank machines in Canada and 18,775 of these are bank-owned ABMs”

Shedding Light On Common Misconceptions In the ATM Industry

Shedding Light on Common Misconceptions Branded
Here are some common ATM misconceptions: 
  1. The major banks own all ATMs. The banks do not own all the ATMs in Canada. The majority of cash dispensers or “white label machines” are run privately by businesses who are competing with banks and other financial institutions. According to the Canadian Banker’s Association, that represents over 46,000 privately owned ATM machines. Research the ATM providers in your surrounding area and select one that fits your criteria for an ATM provider.
  2. ATM providers primarily sell the hardware, the ATM machine itself. There are three primary options when selecting the type of ATM set up that may work best for your business: a turnkey solution which facilitates all aspects of the functioning of the ATM by the ATM provider on the merchant’s behalf. Then there is a more hands on approach in which the provider maintains and monitors the machine’s performance yet the merchant loads their own cash into the machine. Third, a self-funded ownership of the ATM, in this scenario, you load and maintain the machine yourself, therefore receive 100% of the transaction fees. A turnkey solution is often the best option as it removes the responsibilities and liabilities involved in operating and maintaining an ATM in your business.
  3. It is a simple task to own and load your own ATM. Realistically, there are many steps you must take before plugging in your ATM machine; a back ground check, open a business bank account,  start an account with an armoured car service for cash delivery, purchase insurance for the machine as well as for the cash within, installation of a dedicated ADSL line … Have an ATM provider deal with all of these aspects of their business on your behalf.

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