Smiths News direct debit error

Retailers were frustrated last week after Smiths News direct-debit error took their payments a day earlier than usual.

In a letter sent out by the wholesaler to retailers, Smiths apologised for the direct-debit “internal error” and urged them to contact customer services.

It read: “We are truly sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused and appreciate that during these difficult times this may have had an adverse impact on your business.”

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A retailer, who wished to remain anonymous predicted many had “suffered financially because of this”. They added: “Thankfully, our business accounts were fine, but it could’ve easily been a different story if other payments had also come out at the same time.”

Meanwhile, Myles Earle, owner of Myles Newsagent in Swindon added: “I keep a tight eye on my money, otherwise I would have been severely embarrassed.”

When challenged by betterRetailing on what caused the issue, a spokesperson from Smiths responded: “We are conducting a full process review to understand how this could have happened to ensure it won’t be repeated.”

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