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Platform account structure

Understand your account structure to design a platform that suits your business needs.

In a platform setup, your users have a contractual relationship with the payment methods, while you maintain a relationship with your users. Customers typically interact directly with your platform's users, not with your platform. You can process both online and in-person payments for your users.

For example, you have a company called Example Travel and one user. You process in-person payments for your user, who operates in two regions and three different countries.

Here is one of the simplest account structures you can have:

  • A company account (ExampleTravelLLC), that represents your business entity.
  • Three merchant accounts, organized by country:
    • ExampleTravel_NL
    • ExampleTravel_DE
    • ExampleTravel_US
  • A store tied to each merchant account, representing the physical locations of your user's businesses:
    • TravelAgency_AMS
    • TravelAgency_BER
    • TravelAgency_NYC
  • One balance platform covering both regions (EU and US), called ExampleTravel_BalancePlatform. The balance platform has:
    • A liable account holder for your platform, and a liable balance account to hold your platform's funds.
    • For your user:
      • An account holder defining your user's payment processing capabilities.
      • A balance account to hold your user's funds.
  • Two legal entities, containing the information about your platform and your user's business.
  • A business line containing information about your user's industry. In this case, it is travel arrangements and reservation services.

The following diagram shows how these resources are connected.

When a customer in Amsterdam, Netherlands pays for a trip offered by your user:

  1. The payment is routed through the TravelAgency_AMS store, and processed in the ExampleTravel_NL merchant account.
  2. The funds are settled in the balance accounts in your balance platform.
    In this example, you specify to split the funds between your liable balance account and the account holder's balance accounts.
  3. The funds are kept in the account holder's balance accounts until they are paid out.
  4. You pay out to the account holder's verified transfer instrument (bank account).

Payment facilitators

Your platform account setup differs from the general platforms in the following cases:

  • You are already registered with Visa or Mastercard as a payment facilitator.
  • You have individuals as your users who want to accept in-person payments.
  • You have users with high-risk Merchant Category Codes (MCCs).

In these cases, you are onboarding to Adyen for Platforms as a payment facilitator. To comply with scheme regulations, you must have a balance platform and merchant account in each region that you are registered and wish to continue operating as a payment facilitator.

This means that if you have the same processing needs and operate in the same regions and countries as described in the example for platforms, you must have two balance platforms instead of one, based on the regions in which you operate (EU and US). The resources connected to your balance platforms remain the same:

  • A liable account holder for your platform, and a liable balance account to hold your platform's funds.
  • For your user:
    • An account holder defining your user's payment processing capabilities.
    • A balance account to hold your user's funds.

The following diagram shows how these resources are connected.

When a customer in Amsterdam, Netherlands pays for an item offered by your user:

  1. The payment is routed through the ExampleRetailShop_AMS store, and processed in the ExampleRetail_NL merchant account.
  2. The funds are settled in the balance accounts in your balance platform that is associated with the specific region.
    In this example, you choose to split the funds between your liable balance account and the account holder's balance accounts.
  3. The funds are kept in the account holder's balance accounts until they are paid out.
  4. You pay out to the account holder's verified transfer instrument (bank account).