How Will You Operate? As a License Holder or as an ISO?

Now that you’ve made up your mind, how will you operate? As a license holder or as an ISO? Learn the difference and my recommended way forward.


Hello. My name is Faisal Khan. I’m a banking and payment consultant and as part of our “How to start a money transfer” YouTube series, we are going to be discussing the part of what role you would be playing. Would you be starting the money transfer company as a license holder or would you bestarting it as an ISO.

I’ve already explained the concept of what an ISO is and I have already explained the concept of what an agent or a let’s say a program manager or a bank-led sponsorship is. So it’s very important to understand which one avenue you will choose.

Initially, I would recommend you always go for an ISO model. The reason I recommend this is because it’s easy; it’s very economical; you don’t have many regulatory challenges you don’t have to have a compliance program in place; you don’t have to have a compliance officer in place etc etc.
It is literally a turnkey solution provided by an existing license holder. They will help you understand all the intricacies of what it takes to operate a money transfer business and they will do this under their umbrella. All you have to do is drive traffic, marketing, and the first-level customer support. It also allows you to understand the business as you go along.

In the coming months, you will be able to understand all the nomenclature, the taxonomy, how things work, what are the nuances. You know, all the things that you otherwise learn by running a business. Once you have gained let’s say nine months, ten months or one year’s worth of let’s say experience under you, it would then be my recommendation that you start and apply for a small money transfer operator license in some state or country where ever your case may be. And then you would have enough knowledge to go forth with that license.

Applying for a license in the first go and going for it? Usually, usually not recommend it. I hope I was able to answer this clarification between the license holder and an ISO.

And in the next topic, we’ll discuss of how more to run this business. Till next time, have a good one.

This page was last updated on September 1, 2022.

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