While European banks are tightening their customer eligibility and KYC policy, you can get your corporate account relatively easily with a UK-based digital bank.
You are welcome to use our experts’ advice and facilitation services to streamline your application process, as the bank offers its nuances in terms of onboarding requirements and product options.
About the London-based digital bank
We recommend the UK-based digital bank rapidly growing its customer base across the world. It offers superior digital bank services that were launched by an international fintech company several years ago. The company was granted the right to render banking services after obtaining the prestigious Pan-European banking license issued by European Central Bank through the Bank of Lithuania (Lithuanian Central Bank and financial regulator).
According to its license, the digital bank offers traditional services of opening and maintenance of current accounts, consumer and business loans, overdrafts. Customer assets are protected by Barclays / Lloyd’s banks.
The digital bank is physically located in London but provides services globally.
At the launch of the banking operations, the company had already served about 3 million customers. Personal and corporate current accounts and prepaid bank cards have turned out to be the most popular services from the very start. With more than 12 million accounts opened, this digital bank is proud of having 12 thousand daily user signups, and 380 percent of daily active customer base growth in 2019.
No wonder that the digital bank has already earned the status of one of the most highly valued neobanks. In the short term, the digital bank plans to increase its client base to 100 million.
The geography of this British digital bank’s services extends across the UK and beyond – to over 30 countries.
Compared to never-ending bureaucracy and exorbitant fees at conventional banks, digital services are more user-friendly: flexible, seamless, available to more companies, and several times cheaper.
A recent survey in the UK has shown that 90% of small business owners and freelancers prefer services of digital banking. The bank we recommend is planning to extend its market, driven by such segments as the startups, SMEs, freelancers, unbanked and new-to-credit customers, to $394 bln by the year 2026.
Despite the massive impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the fintech sector, the UK-based digital bank which we recommend is pretty lucky to have raised a huge amount of money just before the pandemic hit. Besides, the bank has introduced new approaches to make its business much better organized and structured.
If information in this article is insufficient, please contact our experts for more details and updates at email@example.com.
Advantages of the London-based digital bank account for international customers:
Let us mention here the most obvious ones.
- Fast, easy and fee-free accounts, free monthly account maintenance if you choose to open the account on the standard tariff
- Total costs of using a corporate current account are 10 times cheaper than with a classical European banking institution
- The fastest in Europe speed of processing payments
- A full range of services on the current account, a user-friendly interface, and expert support in English
- The website with basic information about the digital bank in all European languages
- Free Euro IBAN account
- 24-hour support in English
- Internet banking in English.
- Seamless access and use of accounts via mobile applications
- Contactless payment option
- Diverse functionality of payment cards
Who can open the UK-based digital bank account?
To open a non-resident corporate account with the British digital bank, you need to find out well in advance if it can serve you. As a financial institution, it is subject to territorial restrictions due to the specifics of the banking license. Besides, now that the Fifth Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) came into force on January 10 this year, the client is obliged to disclose the details of the beneficiary to the digital bank. This innovation is introduced to verify the beneficiary’s non-participation in activities related to terrorism and money laundering.
Let’s have a look at the requirements the British digital bank sets for its clients.
A corporate account with the British digital bank can be set up by the following clients:
- Private limited companies (LTD)
- Public limited partnerships (PLC)
- Limited liability partnerships (LLP)
- Sole traders
- unlimited companies.
Business accounts cannot be opened by companies and freelancers whose activities may be related to the use of other people’s funds. The following applicants will be refused the British digital bank account opening: associations, charities, foundations (such as venture companies), public sector companies, trusts, special project companies (SPVs), and cooperatives.
Restrictions by country
The UK-based digital bank services are available to companies or individuals (including freelancers) who are registered or can prove a physical presence in the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.
This means that when applying for opening a corporate account, confirmation of the legal (working) address must be provided.
Restrictions by activity type
To open a corporate account with a British digital bank, a non-resident will not only need to confirm the location of the company but also indicate the type of activity in which it is engaged. This is related to the same monitoring rules which the European authorities have imposed on all banks and financial companies.
The account opening will be refused to those companies and entrepreneurs (freelancers) who are engaged in the following types of business:
- manufacturers of armaments, nuclear weapons, firearms or equipment designed for military use;
- adult entertainment, sale or advertising of sexual services;
- art dealers and auction houses;
- industrial, chemical or law firms;
- cannabinoids-related businesses;
- firms processing clients money;
- crowdfunding platforms;
- cryptic currency firms;
- dating escort services;
- funds, similar to venture capital firms;
- NGOs, political and religious organizations;
- pension funds;
- dealers in precious metals and stones, except jewelers;
- sale of used or heavy-duty vehicles;
- special purpose vehicle company (SPV/SPE);
- quasi-cash merchants;
- unregulated foreign exchange business;
- unregulated credit business;
- unregulated Money Service Providers (MSB);
- unregulated money transfers.
A potential client of the UK-based digital bank must not be associated with the exchange, transfer, or management of third party funds (for example, investment firms that deal with their clients’ funds and place them in financial institutions on their behalf).
Corporate account for non-residents
The British digital bank provides non-residents with the most convenient and beneficial conditions for cooperation. Thus, when opening a corporate account, there is no need to make a minimum deposit and ensure a minimum balance in the future.
You are welcome to learn more about the terms and conditions of cooperation with this digital bank by contacting our experts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Currencies and foreign currency transfers
A non-resident can open a corporate account with the British digital bank in pounds sterling (GBP) and euros (EUR) or take advantage of more multifunctional tools. Thus, there is an option to open a multi-currency account allowing transactions in about 30 currencies of the world.
The exceptional feature of the corporate accounts is that through them the clients cannot perform operations with cryptocurrencies. This feature is in observance of the prohibition to serve companies dealing in cryptocurrencies.
However, owners of personal accounts can exchange 30 fiat currencies and have instant access to 5 cryptocurrencies.
You can choose the type of account which will better meet your business needs:
- Local current account in GBP (with the account number and sort code) and EUR (with IBAN and BIC details) – to hold, exchange, transfer funds amongst nearly 30 currencies
- Multi-currency current accounts – to hold, exchange, send and receive funds in nearly 30 currencies – always at the real (interbank) exchange rate
Current accounts can be opened in GBP (with unique sorting code and account number) and EUR (with unique IBAN and BIC). They are best suited for local transactions. Besides, multiple accounts can be additionally created, and each account can be accessed by different employees. Multiple accounts can help to share and thus save the costs, for example, for transactions.
You can hold, exchange, send and receive funds in the following currencies: GBP, EUR, USD, ZAR, TRY, SGD, SEK, SAR, RUB, RON, PLN, NZD, NOK, MXN, JPY, ILS, HUF, HKD, DKK, CZK, CHF, CAD, AUD, AED, HRK, BGN, QAR, THB.
Over 400,000 businesses around the world have already opened their accounts with this UK-based digital bank.
Companies registered in Poland and Norway receive data on local accounts in Polish zloty and Norwegian krone respectively. You can save money by sending funds abroad as local transfers with account details in GBP, EUR, PLN, NOK. Set direct debit in EUR to easily pay for current payments. The British digital bank has an efficient and transparent way to work with customers in Germany and China.
With a multi-currency account, a client of the British digital bank can send and receive money to their account locally and internationally, without incurring losses resulting from exchange transactions. It is possible to manage and monitor all your accounts and transactions in real-time on a single display of your gadget or computer.
Recommended: you are welcome to ask the advice of our experts about which type of current account is best suited for your business, in which currencies of your company it is best to open an account.
Types of smart company cards
The British digital bank customers can order prepaid Mastercard or Visa cards of two kinds: physical and virtual (digital) instant cards (used to secure online transactions or when you’ve canceled your card and are waiting for a new one to arrive ).
The cards are multi-currency, you can issue as many cards as you need for one current account or connect one card to several accounts.
The issue of payment cards is free of charge, there are no hidden service fees. With the help of payment cards (physical and virtual), you can perform any operations in 150 currencies of the world.
It is possible to issue virtual payment cards to make single payments. Such a card will automatically shut down after you use it.
Corporate cards allow you to monitor and manage the expenses of employees to whom they are assigned. You can set transaction limits, nominate particular locations for transactions, and add other restrictions, as well as remotely “freeze” the card.
Moreover, there is a unique offer – a metal contactless payment card of the British digital bank customer. The card has a special design and physical properties, and provides access to a greater number of perks such as concierge service, up to 1% cashback in any currency, including cryptocurrencies, and other convenient options.
Remote access to a corporate account
The UK-based digital bank has no branches, therefore Internet banking is available for remote corporate account management. The British digital bank offers a secure and very convenient payment service.
Financial management of your business has never been so easy.
- Check out the summary of the payment with information about the schedule and status of payments made.
- Send and receive money in about 30 currencies with local and international bank account details.
- Exchange and transfer money without losses, exchange rates, and hidden fees. Save money by sending funds abroad as local transfers with account details in GBP, EUR, PLN, NOK.
How you can set up online banking for business purposes:
- Set up an automatic payment system. If you schedule payments, you can never miss the forgotten or overdue payments.
- Set up repeat payments, such as utility and other regular bills.
- Set up a direct transfer in euros to make regular bills easy to pay.
You can also set up the function of issuing invoices in the bank’s mobile applications available for download via Google Play or the App Store. Get the app on your Android or iPhone mobile device and sign up, choose the payment method that works best for your needs, initiate the transfer in seconds.
Opening and monthly maintenance of a business company account is free of charge.
The standard (Free) package provides access to the account for 2 people and allows 5 free local transactions per month. Additional charges apply when the free limit is exceeded. An international payment on this package will cost the client £3.
There are 3 other packages: at the monthly fees of GBP 25 (Grow), GBP 100 (Scale), and an individual tariff plan (Enterprise – the most expensive one – providing unlimited possibilities to the client, the exact fee needs to be negotiated).
Business freelancer accounts with the British digital bank can be set up for free, and they come with two tariff plans.
The standard (Free) package allows 5 free local transactions per month. Additional charges apply when the free limit is exceeded. An international payment on this package will cost the client £3.
The second free plan offered to freelancers costs £7 per month. Includes up to 20 free local and up to 5 free international transactions a month. Additional charges apply when the free limit is exceeded.
How to open a corporate account with the British digital bank
To open a non-resident corporate account, you need to register and submit the necessary portfolio of documents.
We will be glad to help you set up your account remotely, which means that you do not have to come to London (bank office). Our service fee costs 2999 EUR.
Please note the following details:
- To register an account, you need to scan the originals of the requested documents. Notarization of documents is not required for companies from European countries.
- The director and the founders of the company will have to take a photo of a valid state ID card and provide their selfies with the document.
- When considering the information submitted by a potential client, employees of the British digital bank will need to check that the applicant actually works in the specified jurisdiction in which services may be provided.
- The documentary proof of the working address is the proof dated not later than 3 months before the date of application. Such documents may be:
- Your office lease agreement (with the term of the agreement being for at least six months, and the agreement valid on the day of registration)
- Three consecutive invoices and a joint work contract from the provider (must be valid on the day of registration)
- Your utility bills, e.g. electricity, water, telephone; or the employee’s payslip with proof of address in the EEA or Switzerland and proof of identity indicating the employee’s right of residence in the EEA or Switzerland
The British digital bank also requires the following documents for further clearance:
- Bank account statement (not from a digital bank)
- Extract from the National Register of Companies mentioning your office address
- Contract with the main client, specifying the range of goods or services and the place of their provision
- Specific correspondence with the state bodies, such as a court ruling order or a protocol imposing a fine for traffic violations
If you are a freelancer and work from home, you can use your corporate address. In this case, the following documents will be accepted:
- TV license (please note that mobile TV subscriptions are not accepted)
- Confirmation of your rental payment, such as a rental receipt
- Specific correspondence with the state bodies, such as a court ruling order or a protocol imposing a fine for traffic violations
- A rental agreement for your home. Please note that if you live and work in the same office, the bank may ask for additional confirmation of your work address
Such documents are NOT taken into account:
- invoices, bills to a corporate address not owned or not legally used by the applicant
- bank statements from some digital banks
- the addresses of an accountant or company registration service
The procedure for opening a corporate account:
- To open a corporate account with the UK Digital Bank, please send us a request for this service at email@example.com.
- Make a prepayment for our services. The fee starts from 2999 EUR, depending on the scope of services you need us to provide. You can make payment in the most convenient way – bank transfer, payment card, WebMoney, PayPal, Western Union.
- Once the payment is received, we are fully available to work on your corporate account opening application. Please note that the online form must be completed in English. It is brief, but you will need to provide all the information requested.
- Once the application is completed and scans of all requested documents are attached to it, the client will be short-listed.
- After processing the provided information, bank employees will contact the client within a week to check certain details.
Be prepared that the UK digital bank back office may require other documents. We’ll help you handle that.
Timelines for opening a corporate account with the UK-based digital bank
The client’s corporate office will be activated in 15 minutes. Then the bank will start its inspection of the submitted documents. The clearance takes from 1 to 7 days. But it may also take a little longer if at the moment of your application the British digital bank processes a large number of received applications.
Contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to open a corporate account in Europe.