Here at Curbstone Corporation, we provide secure payment technology for US and Canada-based merchants on the IBM i (AS/400, iSeries) platform.
We play a critical role in our clients’ success, but, according to Curbstone Operations Manager Ryan Nichols, our merchants are the real heroes. They work at the coalface to sell their products and services and advance their businesses.
They all deserve a shout-out for their efforts so we’ve decided to begin a series of posts in which we’ll shine the spotlight on them, and honor some of our favorite customers, showing what they’ve accomplished with our technology.
This time around, we visited with Geiger Brandspiration’s Michael J. Plourde, Director Data & Analytics, to get a feeling for where his company came from and what it is all about.
It turns out that Geiger Brandspiration, based in Lewiston ME, is one of the largest distributors of promotional merchandise in the world and definitely the largest privately owned enterprise of its type. It supplies a large range of promotional items to clients across the US and worldwide, including Fortune 1000 multi-nationals.
Read more about how Geiger leverages Curbstone's security, integration, and cost-savings...
The company’s history goes back all the way to 1878 when Andrew and Jacob Geiger took over their father’s print shop in Newark, NJ, and formed the business. The second generation of the family, consisting of Frank Charles and George, introduced the manufacture of branded diaries and other promotional materials in 1900 and the company hasn’t looked back since.
Geiger is still owned by the Geiger family and among its staff are Jeff and David Geiger, who represent the fifth generation of the family to serve in the business. Long experience in assisting clients to promote themselves has led to the establishment of international partnerships and the acquisition of the BTC Group in London in 2018.
We asked Mr. Plourde how he would account for the company’s success over the years and he put it down to the fact that handing out promotional items is such an effective marketing strategy for the company’s clients that they’re hooked once they try it and they keep coming back for more.
Combine this with top-notch advice, service and a quality range of products including unusual items and it’s easy to see why Geiger Brandspiration progressed to its leading position in the industry with a current annual processing in excess of $15 million in credit card payments at an average of $800 per order.
The company backend is an iSeries Power 8 (iSeries-AS/400 platform) running an ERP system with invoicing along with e-Commerce, phone and in-person credit card payment acceptance integrating directly into it. Payment processing technology had previously been provided by Verifone's Payware Transact, but the software was reaching end-of-life.
Their programmers already had a relationship with Curbstone, which, together with their strong reputation in the industry, prompted Geiger Brandspiration to appoint them as their new technology provider to provide the secure link between the client and the company’s back-end.
Mr. Plourde told us that Curbstone's system was very easy to implement and that the process was eased by our strength in ensuring PCI compliance through, among many other steps, the segregation of all terminals accepting card information keystrokes to mitigate any breach risk.
Also of benefit was that the Curbstone technology included a solution for $0 authorizations, also called validations. These save Geiger ~$17,000 annually and earns it a much better rate from the credit card acquirer by improving the validation of credit card information.
We asked Mr. Plourde to sum up his company’s experience with Curbstone and we are very proud to have received the following reply:
“Curbstone communicated very well and responded to any issues immediately … a great implementation partner. Very rarely is there a hiccup in the system – you implement and forget about it. It just works!”
“What they quoted on the implementation they honored. Very honest and trustworthy … what they say they will do, they do.”
“I’d absolutely and without hesitation recommend them to other merchants!”
Michael J Plourde, Director Data & Analytics, Geiger Brandspiration