ZA Bank is a digital bank that is still in the pilot stage, with accounts activated by invitation only.
The company is based in Hong Kong and holds the distinction of being the first virtual bank to launch. The pilot, which will trial ZA Bank with retail banking customers before being rolled out to the general public, will conduct operations according to the Fintech Supervisory Sandbox (FSS) set by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA).
You can apply to open a ZA Bank account if you are an individual client over 18 and hold a valid HKID card (either a permanent or non-permanent resident). Account openings will then be made by invitation only.
There will be individual accounts that can be started with just $1 and offer an interest rate (p.a.) of 2 percent. They offer the chance to place deposits in only 30 seconds and rapid money transfers to and from local Hong Kong banks and 24-hour loan approval.
Details on business accounts have yet to be released in full, although it appears from the ZA Bank website that they will be an option in the future.
Once ZA Bank is open to the public, it will be easy to add funds thanks to quick deposits from local Hong Kong banks and no significant minimum deposit. There will be a broad range of tenors from 1 month to 1 year. Funds will be added via the mobile app at any time and from any location.
The ZA Bank app is free to download from the Google Play or Apple Play stores. It can provide you with handy notifications when transfers have been made or e-statements have been issued. You will also be able to view your notifications at any time within the app.
There is only an individual account for the ZA Bank virtual bank, and they are available on an invitation-only basis. Following the pilot stage, there are plans to roll out ZA Bank to the general public. There are also indications that ZA Bank business accounts will be available in the future.
ZA Bank customers will be able to fund their savings accounts with HKD, USD, and CNY, and there are also plans to accept other currencies in the future.
You will be able to apply for and be accepted for personal loans 24/7. There is currently a ceiling of HKD 1,000,000, and ZA Bank has emphasized that there will be no hidden charges. Loans may be redeemed early within seven days, and no fee will be charged.
There is currently no indication of any cashback bonuses being available as part of the ZA Bank offering; however, there is always the chance that this could change in the future.
At present, there is no indication of the foreign exchange rates or withdrawal fees that ZA Bank customers will need to pay while abroad.
• The first virtual bank of its kind in Hong Kong
• 24/7 loan approval
• Speedy transfers and deposits