Nick Wright, Director and COO of SolutionsHub, discusses the importance of access to secure banking and reliable payment services in the egaming sector and the benefits of a tier-1 licence.
Banking: The Heart of an Egaming Business
For an egaming company, banking is the heart of the business. Payments are the arteries, and the flow of money is the blood supply. It is essential that egaming firms maintain strong banking relationships, with payment services tailored to meet the geographical needs of the business to ensure the lifeblood flows efficiently.
Tier-1 Licences: Unlocking Reliable Banking and Payment Partners
It is somewhat rare these days that we are engaged to support prospective online gambling licensees who are unsure of their payment and banking providers, but we are finding many operators are looking to avail themselves of more reliable banking partners and payment services providers (PSPs) at preferential rates compared to those which can be obtained while holding a tier-2 licence.
The Real Cost of Doing Business in Tier-2 Licence Jurisdictions
It is fair to say the Isle of Man is not the cheapest licence to obtain and maintain. However, one only needs to start scratching the surface to realise the real costs of doing businesses in tier-2 licence jurisdictions is the lack of banking, payments at premium rates, and doubts over access to either with assurances of continuity.
The Importance of Reputation and Credibility for Egaming Operators
The Isle of Man is an ideal place to settle and obtain a tier-1 licence. The Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission is extremely friendly and open to new ideas when it comes to products and services that their licence holders wish to offer. A number of existing Isle of Man licence-holders run a Curacao or Maltese licence alongside their OGRA licence and see benefits in this operational model.
How an Isle of Man Licence Enhances Credibility
Upon obtaining an OGRA licence and completing the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission’s go-live checks, the operator can display the Isle of Man crest on its landing page. This gives credibility to the operator for both customers, B2B partners, and banking/PSP partners alike.
Meeting Legal Obligations for AML/CFT and Good Practices
Merely holding an Isle of Man licence doesn’t mean that banking providers will come running to offer the operator accounts. It remains the operator’s responsibility to ensure that it follows good practice and meets its legal AML/CFT obligations. However, with the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission’s oversight and licensing regime, operating within the correct parameters will ensure that the operator can demonstrate to any future banking or PSP partner that it runs a tight ship.