How to untangle the process of global business expansion by leveraging a merchant of record model

Monday 26 February 2024 14:11 CET | Editor: Raluca Ochiana | Interview

Pierre-Henri Paulhe, VP of Global Accounts at Nexway, provides a glimpse into the complex process of businesses expanding on a global scale.


What are the main benefits of expanding your business globally?

In a context where all industries are getting extremely competitive – with a strong need for brands to be identified and perceived as clearly differentiated from other players – no market can be left behind. While the US and Europe are still driving significant volumes, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and LATAM are key regions that all companies must consider entering from the very beginning, especially when it comes to selling digital goods.

Going global is key to imposing a strong presence, benefiting from fast-growing economies, and reaching out to any potential customer across the globe. However, having a global go-to-market ambition does not prevent a company from having a local approach, especially in terms of offer or business model, and some regions could be the best way to experiment with new models such as subscription, pay-per-use, activated trials, etc.

In your view, what are the main challenges of global expansion, and how can businesses face them?

Going for a global business expansion in a timely, qualitative, and controlled risk approach on your own is almost impossible, even with a strong team and significant resources. All topics must be covered for a proper go-to-market, from validating a local or cross-border approach to local payment service provider (PSP) identification, the onboarding and Know Your Customer (KYC) process, local tax registration and management, hiring local customer support, etc. The number of topics to cover for launching in a new region is vast and requires high local expertise.

When balancing the classic buy versus build approach, many players need to catch up on some fundamental elements that they need to assess and master to go global, and this can be very painful for a business, delaying the go-live step at best, and potentially creating legal and compliance risks in many cases.

Identifying the right partner who can help your go-to-market is crucial to your company’s success and long-term profitability. With a full, hands-on, and localised approach, relying on one single and trusted partner to operate on all markets is the pinnacle of a great business strategy to avoid maintaining multiple integrations with local partners and creating a potential risk of unidentified defaults. Brand consistency, controlled product image, and elaborating the right pricing strategy are essential to international expansion. Nexway, with our extensive experience in online sales since 2002, does not act only as a solution provider, but also as a consulting team in all domains (IT, tax, payment, marketing and sales, CRM, customer support, legal and compliance, etc.).

How and why should businesses use a Merchant of Record for global growth? 

Nexway’s Merchant of Record model provides a hands-on solution to go to market globally, effectively, and quickly – while benefiting from our local expertise in all aspects of online sales management. We create and integrate a whole e-store experience directly on the partner’s website within a few days, allowing customers worldwide to purchase their products or services. 

We understand that commercial initiatives and great business ideas often face internal resource constraints within companies, such as roadmap rigidity for new developments in R&D or the limitations of operating models. 

The key advantage of using Nexway’s solution is that we operate your business on your behalf, while still giving you control over it. All ideas will come to life with limited to no internal resource allocation from your end, thus accelerating your time to market. 

Working as an extension to your team, Nexway takes care of: 

  • Localisation and hosting of purchase experience, including local payment methods and currencies; 

  • Invoicing and billing of users, both B2C and B2B; 

  • Compliance with local market rules and regulations (data management, market restrictions, locally applicable); 

  • Tax calculation and remittance; 

  • Fraud and chargeback management; 

  • Customer support; 

  • Reports and analytics to help you manage your activity while preventing the risk of legal and compliance on all the above. 

What are the emerging markets’ ecommerce opportunities for global expansion? 

At Nexway, we are noticing a strong and growing trend in Southeast Asian markets such as Vietnam, Indonesia, and Malaysia, but also a significant investment in regions such as the Middle East, LATAM, and Africa. Users are getting higher budget allowances for digital goods and a growing appetite for online shopping, mainly through mobile and e-wallet purchases. 

However, expanding globally and tapping into these markets requires a comprehensive and strategic approach. Even with a proficient team and substantial resources, attempting this on your own can be challenging. Athriving global expansion strategy involves meticulous planning and execution across various aspects of the business. This includes identifying and partnering with local PSPs, navigating through KYC processes, adhering to local tax regulations, ensuring compliance with laws specific to each region, and establishing high-quality customer support services. 

At Nexway, we understand the complexities of global expansion in the ecommerce landscape. We offer customisable solutions for various business needs by combining cutting-edge ecommerce technology, merchant services, and a team of ecommerce experts. By leveraging our expertise, businesses can navigate the complexities of different regions, optimise their digital monetisation flows, and capitalise on the growing opportunities in emerging markets. 

Nexway is the perfect partner for businesses aiming to expand their global ecommerce footprint. Our tailored solutions and deep industry knowledge empower our partners to enter new markets, connect with customers, and drive revenue growth while minimising risks and ensuring a qualitative and timely market entry.

This editorial piece was first published in The Paypers' Cross-Border Payments and Ecommerce Report 2023–2024, which taps into the fast-growing cross-border market and provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments that are pivotal in this space, being the ultimate source of information for ecommerce businesses interested in expanding globally.  

About Pierre-Henri Paulhe

Pierre-Henri is the VP of Global Accounts at Nexway, a technology and services company for online commerce. As an expert in the global payment market, Pierre-Henri built extensive knowledge during ten years in the industry by supporting digital companies to expand into new markets, foster growth, and seek new opportunities.



About Nexway

With over two decades of experience, Nexway handles the complexity of online sales and covers the full scope of ecommerce aspects to help businesses optimise their online sales and revenue streams. From worldwide accepting payment to subscription handling and tax management, leverage time and money while scaling your business into the global market.

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Keywords: cross-border payments, ecommerce, marketplace, KYC, PSP, local payment method, merchants, growth markets, compliance, B2B payments, expansion
Categories: Payments & Commerce
Companies: Nexway
Countries: World
This article is part of category

Payments & Commerce


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