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Marketplace account structure

Understand your account structures to design a marketplace that suits your business needs.

As a marketplace, you process online payments on behalf of your users. Customers recognize that they are doing business directly with your marketplace.

For example, you have a company called Online Marketplace and one user, who operates in three different countries. Here is one of the simplest account structures you can have:

  • A company account that represents your business entity: OnlineMarketplaceLLC.
  • Three merchant accounts, organized by country:
    • OnlineMarketplace_NL
    • OnlineMarketplace_DE
    • OnlineMarketplace_BE
  • A balance platform called OnlineMarketplace_BalancePlatform, which contains:
    • For your marketplace: A liable account holder, and a liable balance account to hold your marketplace's funds.
    • For your user:
      • An account holder defining your user's capabilities.
      • One or more balance accounts to hold your user's funds.
  • Two legal entities, containing the information about your marketplace and your user's business. This information is needed for the required verification checks (KYC).

The following diagram shows how these resources are connected.

Flow of funds in your account

When a customer in the Netherlands pays for goods or services offered by your user:

  1. The payment is processed in the OnlineMarketplace_NL merchant account.
  2. The funds are settled in the balance accounts of your balance platform.
  3. The funds are kept in your user's balance accounts until they are paid out.
  4. You pay out to the account holder's transfer instrument (verified bank account).