How Paystack Has Suffered Us

Last year (2017), we built our first fully online product -- a gift card site. It allows you to buy US iTunes gift cards and get it instantly delivered to you in seconds via email. And it has been an amazing success, garnering sales of between N500,000 and N1,700,000 a month but the profit margin is razor thin.

It was to be a precursor to our main online product -- a stocks analysis app. It will be launching in about two weeks but you can get a behind the scene peek at and even share with me your feedback (at

Unfortunately, Paystack which handles our payment processing has been frustrating us on a grand scale. 

Whenever we get some significant sales, they lock our account and we won't be able to withdraw our sales fund. So it becomes a case of customer has paid and used the gift card but Paystack is not giving us the money, so we end up not being able to restock and every new sales keep going into a locked account.

At first, we would email and call, and someone would attend to us saying it's a random flagging by their fraud system that it would go off in some hours. Then it gets resolved in 2 to 3 days but the disruption it causes is painful. Customers are not able to buy cards because we didn't restock since Paystack has withheld our funds and are giving a subtle threat that they would initiate a charge back (return of money to the customer who has already used the gift card he bought) if the customers' banks do not confirm that the transactions were made from the rightful card owners. 

It sounded like a joke to me. Their fraud system thinks a transaction is fraudulent but lets it go through, the customer has been serviced and gotten value for the payment made, then Paystack, after 24 hours suddenly feels the transaction needs review and then puts a hold on our account saying it wants to manually review the transactions with the banks so they can confirm that the transactions were by the rightful card owners. They not only withhold just the suspected transactions but all current and future transactions till they complete their review.

This has been happening steadily every time we get a daily transaction amount of about N40,000 and above. The fraud system suddenly feels no one should be making sales that high in one day. So we have to do many back and forth emails, as they no longer pick phone calls. And it takes 2 to 3 days to get a reply to an email. 

This October only, they have withheld our N632,000 for over 5 days, saying they didn't get replies for the banks. They don't think that if every merchant or payment gateway calls the banks for every single POS and online transaction for verification the banks won't be overwhelmed.

And it's not yet end of October, they have again withheld our N195,000. And as usual, no replies to emails. Just radio silence while our business goes into limbo.

Now I am having second thoughts on using Paystack for our major online product which we plan to launch in a couple of days.


  1. This is ridiculous and frustrating and a threat to business. I wonder why anyone would continue to do business with them. They charged you and also hold you to ransom. It's best you pull out and explore other options. Have you explored gtpay?.

  2. I complained 2 weeks ago about how Paystack payment system which on used on the BRISIN site and Bet9ja site didn't come through. Too many problems, I guess that's why it isn't available anymore on the Bet9a site.

  3. So true, they withheld my money. Once that is released, I am closing my account with them

    1. Is it possible for Paystack to withhold funds for 5 months?
      I did business with someone and he has been telling me that Paystack withheld money for the sales. I'm beginning to think he wants to pull a fast one on me. Pls help 😟

  4. That's a serious one. High chance he is lying or something beyond what he is saying has happened.


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