Thank you for your interest in accepting the Bearcat Card ("BCC"), which is a way for UC students and merchants to conduct transactions with minimal risk, greater convenience, and improved accuracy. For your benefit, we have provided answers to merchants’ most frequently asked questions of us regarding BCC. Feel free to call our office at 556-2000 if you have any questions not covered on this site.
1. What do I need to do to get started? Expand
You need to complete and (1) return the Merchant Application form, Merchant Agreement form, ACH banking information, and W-9 to the University - include the Bearcat Card start-up fee of $250 and send to: University of Cincinnati, Bearcat Card Office, 2766 UC MainStreet, Cincinnati, Ohio 45221-0220. Then (2) call 513-556-0433 to purchase your VeriFone card reader. Once equipment has been received, we will set it up, and call you for a convenient install date. (3) If you want to use a credit card to charge the fee and/or equipment, please call the Bearcat Card desk at 513-556-2000, or the Bearcat Card manager at 513-556-0433.
2. How long does it take until the system is running at my store? Expand
It generally takes about two weeks from the time the equipment is ordered and received.
3. Who will train my staff to use the equipment? Expand
Our BCC manager, technician, or designated qualified trainer will train a reasonable number of your staff and provide written documentation on using equipment.
4. Where do I obtain the VeriFone equipment? Expand
Check with your BCC manager. You can also check with your neighbor merchants who already have the equipment. Contact our office to purchase and order equipment.
5. How much does the VeriFone equipment cost? Expand
The verifone reader that will interface with the Bearcat Card is the VX570. This equipment runs through the internet, and requires a static IP address. The total cost of a refurbished reader is $428 ($199 for the reader plus $210 for a license fee plus shipping). If you prefer, you can purchase a new reader for $732 ($717 for the reader plus shipping). Both new and refurbished equipment have a one year warranty.
6. What should I do if my equipment is not working? Expand
Call the BCC office at (513) 556-2000. Someone will promptly assist you thereafter, or log a call at cso.uc.edu/bcc. The warranty on your equipment is with the merchant where you purchased the equipment, not the BCC office. However, we will check the equipment out for you. If necessary, we will give you a loaner in case your equipment has to go back to the merchant for repair. The University is not liable for losses incurred for failure of the equipment to function properly.
7. Will my business increase if I accept BCC? Expand
It is very possible that your business will increase. More and more students are purchasing with the BCC. As more merchants sign on to participate in the program, many students will be exclusively using BCC. Students are attracted by the safety and convenience of the campus card and begin to expect that their favorite merchants will accept the card.
8. What marketing does the University provide for my business? Expand
Merchants accepting the BCC are the beneficiaries of many free marketing efforts by the University. Once you come aboard, we announce your business on Twitter, Facebook, and our website uc.edu/bearcatcard. The University posts numerous advertisements and distributes many brochures regarding BCC that include your store name and phone number. Further, UC advertises BCC at most University sponsored events. Many of these advertisements and brochures list businesses accepting BCC. Our website, which is regularly updated, will also list merchants accepting BCC along with your web address that users can access from our site. In addition, future University promotions regarding coupons, discounts, or sweepstakes related to BCC will also likely provide information regarding participating merchants. Off campus merchant specials are announced on Twitter, Facebook, and listed on the BCC website.
9. What happens if a student lacks sufficient funds to pay for the merchandise? Expand
This program strictly involves debit transactions, so if a student does not have sufficient funds for the purchase, the transaction will automatically be denied.
10. What happens if I accept a stolen card? Expand
If you accept a stolen card, you are not eligible for reimbursement for the sale, so staff must be trained to carefully inspect all presented cards and check the photo on the ID. Does it match the person?
11. How will my business be reimbursed for sales? Expand
The University reimburses merchants by electronic deposit once a month or weekly for reported sales in the BCC system. UC deducts a 4% monthly or 5% weekly fee from the reimbursement. Merchants can check their daily BCC totals at the end of each evening from their Verifone. Our office distributes sales daily or monthly by email.
The university prepares funds for transfer the first or second working day of the month if paid monthly.
12. Cash Flow is obviously important to my business. Can't I be reimbursed for sales on a weekly basis? Expand
Some businesses elect to receive weekly electronic deposits with a 5% service fee, rather than the usual 4%.These sales are reimbursed every 7 days.