Digital Bank Accounts For Businesses
For EU registered companies
Revolut is available in all 31 countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) plus Switzerland. It offers an unlimited number of bank accounts for your business in 28 currencies, making it a wise choice for a Europe-wide enterprise. Like many other digital banks, Revolt has consciously made the whole sign up process as quickly as possible. Business customers can sign up using an email address with a laptop or phone in minutes and have the account approved in 24 hours or less. You’ll automatically get both a GBP and a Euro bank account with a sort code, account number, and an IBAN.
Making its international services a major USP, Revolut for Business boasts several different subscriptions that include varying levels of free UK and international transactions, plus cheap currency exchanges, right up to the top tier plan with a £1000 monthly fee for unlimited transactions and exchanges.
Curve, available throughout the EEA, is one challenger bank that has managed to carve out its niche among the myriad of new banks online by creating an app that allows you to load up all your accounts and cards, including Mastercard and debit cards, and then use one single Curve card to make payments with them.
This digital bank has also proven itself to be a step ahead when it comes to security as a USP by bypassing the traditional password-protected login process instead of sending out an email every time you want to log in. While this does hamper convenience somewhat, it makes your account much more secure.
Finnish digital bank Holvi offers business accounts in all ten countries in which it operates – Finland, Germany, Austria, Belgium, France, Ireland, Italy, and the Netherlands. Uniquely, you can set up your online store alongside your business bank account in all of the countries mentioned above, excluding the UK.
To apply for a Holvi business account, you will need your ID, company registration number, VAT number if VAT-registered, and a registry extract from Companies House. That bit is quick, but the card issued with your Holvi business account can take up to 10 days to arrive.
Dutch bank bunq operates in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Italy, France, Portugal, Spain, Belgium, Ireland, and the UK. As it only offers accounts using Euros, UK residents cannot use it to have their salary paid into or access their funds in sterling, so it is only convenient for employees paid in Euros.
bunq’s business account features include a special VAT vault whereby 20% is automatically set aside in a separate sub-account, ready to be paid as soon as the tax office demands. Other sub-accounts can be set up for different outgoings, such as business expenses, office supplies, or travel. Since each sub-account comes with its account number and IBAN, managing different money pots becomes much simpler. Setting up a bunq business account is straightforward, requiring only a mobile phone, an address, and some ID.
Hong Kong-based Neat boasts of its simple sign up process, which takes only 10 minutes using the regular email address and password combination. It also highlights that its account opening process has won an award from the Hong Kong government for its high level of security, operating to its strict national standards.
The Neat website hosts a long list of nationalities, industries, and company jurisdictions that the bank does not accept, which perhaps reflects the stringent rules under which it must operate. It also clearly lays out the different charges applied for different actions you undertake, which differs from the usual monthly subscription tiers you can choose from other digital banks. While many functions are free, charges levied for withdrawals, transactions, card replacements, and even an inactivity fee, so it is worth checking these carefully and doing a bit of maths to truly understand if what you’re getting is worth paying for.
For UK registered companies
Monese, which offers accounts handling GBP and Euros, requires potential business account holders to sign up for a personal Monese account first. Despite this extra step, this is unlikely to cause much fuss or delay as this challenger banks eschews credit checks and proofs of address and lets you set up your account using your mobile phone number.
While business accounts are currently only available for UK businesses, Monese may well expand its customer base in the future.
As a business bank, Monzo is still inside the chrysalis, promising to emerge as a beautiful banking butterfly sometime soon. It began trialing its business services in February 2019 with the launch of its first 100 business accounts. Still, without a proper plan released by Monzo, it’s impossible to tell what the digital bank will offer to differentiate it from the rest.
Early signs suggest Monzo will shift its focus on businesses from annual turnover to looking to the stage at which a business is and offers its own unique services accordingly.
Why choose an online business bank account?
The number of digital-only ‘challenger’ banks out there is rising all the time, and each offers a range of features to suit your business. If you’re now looking to open a bank account for a company, it’s probably time to forgo traditional branch-based banking and roam into the new online-only business banking world.
However, finding the right digital bank for your business can be challenging, especially since not all these new entities are available world- or even Europe-wide. So, before you open a bank account for a company online, read on to find out more about the benefits offered by some of the biggest and brightest new challenger banks, along with details on who exactly qualifies for an account.
With digital, online-only banks, all transactions are done online through an app, and there are no physical branches to visit. While they lack banking staff on hand to talk face to face with printed bank statements and sometimes even access to cash, they make up for these by offering finance-at-your-fingertips convenience plus a range of tools to make financial management more straightforward.
This focus on convenience means sign up is usually very straightforward and requires answering some questions about your business, providing company information, and uploading some ID.
With digital banking via an app comes some real benefits that traditional banking methods cannot match. Realtime spending alerts can help you spend less time and energy tracking outgoings, while the ability to freeze and unfreeze cards can add security. You can even create customized sub-accounts that can help you and your employees stick to different budgets and keep up with multiple regular payments.
How to open an online business bank account
Before you embark on your new banking journey, take a look at the account opening processes and conditions of some of the biggest new digital banks to help you find the right one for your business.
So, despite digital banking is a very recent innovation, the sector has already come a long way. With a now substantial range of online business bank accounts to choose from, it’s possible to find one that will match or even surpass the demands of your 21st-century business and help you manage your company’s finances most clearly and conveniently.