Tyro’s catastrophic failures in Jan 2021

In Business Resources, Featured Home Page News, Harmonisation, Media and Communications, Momentum

Payment technology (terminal) provider Tyro have been unable to quickly fix ‘bricking’ of some terminals, leaving questions about their long term capacity for problem-solving.

Tyro’s terminals were failing to operate for around 5% of operators for more than a week in early January 2021 – a week that many operators were relying upon to make up for more than 9-months of Covid-induced revenue losses.

The company have tried to explain that some new software wasn’t compatible on old hardware – whereas best practice for software IT ‘releases’ (of versions) is to trial across all platforms and scan for bugs – especially for bugs that bring catastrophic failures.

The Tourism News, 13th Jan 2021

Embattled payments provider Tyro defends outage response

Embattled payments technology company Tyro has defended its response to week long outages after its terminals were ‘bricked’, leaving small businesses around the country unable to process payments.

Tyro is the largest provider of Eftpos terminals outside the big four banks and alerted the Australian Securities Exchange to a “terminal connectivity” outage last week which it said affected less than 15 per cent of its terminals and less than 5 per cent of customers.

Small businesses owners have flooded Tyro’s Facebook page with complaints with one posting “Two of my venues can’t accept card for four days. I’m expecting you guys will cover loss of revenue?”.

Tyro Payments chairman David Thodey and CEO Robbie Cooke ring the bell as the fintech debuted on the ASX in 2019.
Tyro Payments chairman David Thodey and CEO Robbie Cooke ring the bell as the fintech debuted on the ASX in 2019.CREDIT:PETER BRAIG

Tyro chief executive Robbie Cooke told The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald the problem was confined to a subset of Tyro’s terminals that have a particular version of software installed.

“We understand the significance of this disruption and sincerely apologise to our impacted merchants,” he said. “We are committed to genuinely considering all options to help our customers who have been impacted by this issue and these discussions will be prioritised once the issue has been completely resolved.”

Mr Cooke said Tyro had been actively collecting, repairing and returning terminals and was working “24/7” with terminal provider Wordline and partner Amtek.

“We are working at pace and will be in a position to update customers and the market on this shortly, when we will also have a clearer idea of how long it will take to have most impacted customers back to normal operations,” he said.

Tyro listed on the Australian Securities Exchange in December 2019 and is chaired by former Telstra chief executive David Thodey.

The fintech was valued at $1.4 billion on debut and reported a $19 million loss in February last year.

Melbourne craft brewer Moon Dog was one of the businesses hit by the outage with nine of its 14 Tyro terminals bricking on Wednesday last week and chief executive Maurice McGrath said the terminals still have not been replaced.

“It hasn’t affected us as much as other businesses as we have still been able to get by with the five still working,” he said.

However Mr McGrath said he would consider switching payment providers as a result of the outage.

“Our priority at the moment is to make sure they are operational again but the reality again is that when you have a significant technological issue you have to evaluate your options going forward.”

Tyro shares fell 8.3 per cent to close at $2.89, against a 0.3 per cent fall for the broader market.

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