Start a prepaid card company
The first thing you must to start a prepaid card company is to form a company. This is a fairly straight-forward process and will usually take a couple of hours. Once you have formed your company your company name will appear on the Companies House register as a registered entity.
The next thing you must do is to obtain a licence from the financial services regulator, namely, the Financial Conduct Authority. The precise licence you will require is the electronic money institution. Here you have two options.
Under option 1, you can register as a small electronic money institution with the FCA. This option does not have an initial capital requirement and you will be able to start your prepaid company in the UK and issue your cards in the UK, to UK-based consumers.
Under option 2, you can become authorised as an authorised electronic money institution (EMI). The initial capital requirement is €350,000. Once you become regulated you can issue your cards across Europe to some 512 million people. This is done through ‘passporting’ which means that you can provide your cards in other countries I.e. Germany, France etc without having to set up physically in those additional countries.
In order to successfully obtain the EMI registration or authorisation, you will need to demonstrate to the regulator that you have the adequate financial and non-financial resources to manage the business, including suitable employees, an office and IT systems. The FCA expects firms to meet a range a requirements before it allows them to provide regulated financial services. When an applicant firm submits an application seeking authorisation, the FCA reviews their business plans, risks, budget, resources, systems, controls and its people. The later are expected to have the necessary qualifications, experience and ability to carry out their role effectively.
Another important thing you must do before making an application is to ensure you meet the FCA’s threshold conditions. What are threshold conditions? Think of the threshold condition as the basic requirements you must have in place. For example, you will need to ensure that your ‘mind and management’, in other words, people such as directors, must be located in the UK. You will need to demonstrate through your application that you have appropriate resources to operate your business. This includes having sufficient financial, management, staff, and systems to manage your business. Your team should be suitable and competent for their roles. This is usually demonstrated through past work experience.
Once you have successfully obtained your licence you will need to become a principal member with Visa or Mastercard in order to issue your own branded cards. Alternatively, you can approach an existing principal member of Visa or Mastercard who will be able to help you issue branded cards under them.
Buckingham Capital Consulting is a leading international consulting firm, specialising in payment services, electronic money, banking and investment services. We are able to advise you on the best course of action and strategy based upon your business plan and financial product or service. We can help you with licencing, compliance, operational setup and related services, including, obtaining banking facilities.
Call us today on 02078662512 or 442078662512 if you are calling from abroad. You can send an email to email@example.com to arrange a telephone call or to discuss your requirements and plan. We are also able to arrange calls or conference calls using Skype. Our Skype ID is BCC54321. If you wish, we can arrange a meeting at one of our offices.
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