At Comistar, the mother company of BankApply, we have regular weekly business discussions. We discuss what’s happening to the business, where we are heading, brainstorming new ideas, reflecting, and so forth.
Recently, during the meeting, we discussed the services related to company incorporation. Incorporation services is something we’ve been doing since the beginning of Comistar. It’s always been there, and in many ways it’s very standardised and traditional industry. Agreed, there have been big changes in the recent years – with the e-residency and online company incorporation, there are less things to do for a service provider as the processes can be automated. The value-add comes from consulting and educating clients about regulations and must-do’s, and helping them to build great companies without having to worry about compliance.
However, thinking about the value-chain of that specific industry, the information available on the internet and all the online tools, incorporation of a company in most parts of the world is like buying a chewing gum – everybody can do it. There’s no barrier of entry or complexity to overcome. Incorporating a company is not where the value is created, because you can’t do anything with a company unless you can transact with it. To transact you need a bank account, and this is where the biggest complexity lies.
Banking has become a key issue for entrepreneurs who incorporate a foreign company. The company can be in Hong Kong, Estonia, Malta, Cyprus, UK, etc – while the international business is encouraged, banks are scrutinised by local authorities to prevent any money laundry risks, and this means non-residents have hard time getting the bank account opened. E-money institutions like Revolut or TransferWise have made things easier, but specific client types still require flexible solutions and risk-appetite to be accepted. Everybody in the industry knows how hard it is for crypto businesses (or dating sites, FX, gambling, offshore, etc) to have a bank account.
This is the key reason why we’ve developed the BankApply software. We spent many months interviewing different banks and EMIs about the client profiles they accept and processes they have to build the BankApply database, on top of years of experience and relationships we already had in place due to our consultancy business. At the same time we hired full-time software developers to build a matching engine and a central system to manage the whole account opening process. We hope that with BankApply we can take away the biggest pain and struggle of starting a business in different markets.
More businesses means more value and wealth created, which gives us a better and a stronger economy.
Seemingly small things matter, as the compound effect is large.