Wait a second... I think there's a little confusion, here.
For starters, NameCheap is an eNom reseller. As an eNom reseller, it is able to create eNom reseller accounts beneath its own eNom reseller account. And when you pay the $25 to NameCheap, that's precisely what it does: Creates a new eNom reseller account beneath its own eNom reseller account -- one that can be logged-in to directly on the eNom web site where the new NameCheap/eNom reseller will have all the features of a regular eNom reseller account that a person could get directly from eNom.
eNom's new (still upcoming, at this writing) PDQ product is something that a person can only obtain if they're an eNom reseller. The cost to sign-up for and use PDQ will be $99 per year. But the cost of becoming an eNom reseller in the first place so that one may even avail oneself of the ability to sign-up for PDQ is, in effect, the minimum initial funding of the reseller account which is $500. In other words, you can't get PDQ unless you're an eNom reseller. And you can't become an eNom reseller -- at leat not a direct eNom reseller -- unless you do the minimum initial funding of the reseller account credit balance at $500. Thereafter, replenishment of the eNom reseller account credit balance is $100 per replenishment.
That's where the value of signing-up to be a reseller at a place like NameCheap comes in...
...and starts to look really attractive, to wit:
When you sign-up as an eNom reseller with NameCheap (or with any eNom reseller, for that matter), and then when you first log-in to your new eNom reseller account on the eNom web site, your reseller account credit balance is, of course zero. However -- and make sure you understand this so you'll see its value -- the eNom system treats you as if you're an existing, mature reseller whose balance has simply slipped to zero. As such, you may then initially fund your reseller account's credit balance with only $100 -- the minimum replenishment amount that all resellers pay whenever they wish to replenish their reseller accounts.
Do you see what that means? It means that by signing-up as a reseller with NameCheap, you end-up being allowed to become an eNom reseller without having to pay eNom's $500 initial funding level. Instead, you need only pay $100 initially. And, for that $100 you get a price ($7.99) that, had you signed-up directly with eNom, would have required of you an initial funding of nearly $4,000. The aforementioned $500 initial funding directly to eNom pre-pays the purchase of 55 names at $8.95 each. To get one's reseller price directly from eNom down to $7.95, one must initially funding his or her eNom direct account with $3,975 which pre-pays the purchase of 500 names.
Signing-up as an eNom reseller with NameCheap for $25 plus the $100 minimum funding gets you the same prices per domain that eNom direct resellers must pay nearly $4,000 in order to get!
I suspect that Nic is basing his "they suck" on NameCheap's track record of usability and support to its retail customers who purchase and maintain their domain names via NameCheap's own custom interface and back-end programming which, in turn, communicates with the eNom system. That, I think even NameCheap would have to painfully admit, has been a little flakey at times -- not usually, mind you, but certainly at sometimes. And when it has, I've read in various places, NameCheap's support has sometimes not exactly been as quick to respond as some of its clients would have liked -- or so they've claimed. And that issue, I'll leave for the folks at NameCheap to jump in here and address if they wish to.
But a person who pays NameCheap its twenty five bucks and then lets NameCheap set them up as an eNom reseller beneath NameCheap's eNom reseller account does not even deal with NameCheap's custom interface. NameCheap's resellers use the eNom web site directly -- just like NameCheap itself does. So, at least for NameCheap's resellers, it doesn't even matter if NameCheap sucks (which, in my opinion, it doesn't... but I'm just saying). All that matters for those NameCheap customers is how well the eNom web site works.
And one of the features of which an eNom reseller -- no matter whether a direct eNom reseller or one created beneath NameCheap's (or any other eNom reseller's) reseller account -- may avail itself will be eNom's new PDQ system which will cost eNom reseller $99 per year. That $99 per year fee is separate and apart from the aforementioned initial funding of the reseller account credit balance.
Hope that clears things up.