Last week we wrote about problems opening bank accounts in Europe. This week, we’re going to write about the solution we’ve built to help businesses and natural persons to open bank accounts in the EU.
At Comistar we’ve helped many entrepreneurs to start a business in Europe and to open bank accounts throughout the 7 years we’ve been operating. It’s not only high-risk industries like crypto, gambling, offshore and similar businesses who’ve been struggling with conventional banks – it’s also simple online businesses who have seen their applications declined.
Why? Because of the strict AML rules which have been constantly getting stricter due to various money-laundry scandals in the last decade. Financial authorities, to avoid any risks, are pushing banks to eliminate any AML risk from the system – which of course is not realistic without suffocating the business environment. Career bureaucrats can’t be bothered unless there’s a sufficient public interest about the issue, which fortunately seems to be the case – at least in some Member States the politicians and even ministries have been calling out banks to implement more realistic measures.
We expect that we’ve reached the pinnacle of the situation, and we will slowly get back to a normal banking market next few years.
However, opening a bank account regardless of the market situation is a pretty gruesome process, especially if you have very specific needs or operate in a high-risk industry (or are a non-resident of the EU). Researching and applying in different institutions takes hours of your time, without knowing the outcome.
At BankApply, we’ve built a system where we match your profile (based on the information gathered during the registration) with suitable banking institutions. After we’ve matched the banks with your profile, we also fill in the applications on your behalf and submit them to the bank. Of course, you still need to do the identification as required by the bank’s due diligence process, but that’s inescapable. To increase the likelihood of a successful account opening, we submit the application to a minimum of three banks. As a cooperation partner of the banks, we often get preferential treatment when it comes to the processing time of the applications. One thing we can’t do, however, is to guarantee the successful reply from the bank – as we’re not the decision-makers we don’t have that power. For example, bank’s may say “no” due to your background or if you have a high-risk industry where you serve a lot of clients, lack of KYC procedures (if you don’t have one – but we can help with this as well). We have built our matching engine in a way that your profile and background is acceptable for the bank, but 100% guarantees we can not give.
Going further. here are some common questions that you may have about our services and things that you have to know about BankApply and banking landscape in the European Union.
Which banks do you have in your system?
We have conventional banks and so-called “online banks”, which are European e-money institutions (EMI). EMIs are excellent choices for high-risk industries and non-residents as they usually don’t require in-person identification in the bank’s branch. EMIs provide similar online banking features as conventional banks (making payments, accepting payments, etc), but usually do not give out loans or invest their clients’ money. While they also don’t have the required guarantee fund (in EU each deposit is guaranteed up to 100 000€) for deposits, they also don’t have a portfolio of bad loans ( 2008 financial crisis). Still, some clients always prefer conventional banks and we also have conventional banks in the system. We are constantly growing our cooperation and database with the banks and EMIs.
What’s the price of your service?
Application per bank starts at 120€ for EU natural persons and the most expensive category is offshore companies at 280€ per application. Once you register (free) you can use our calculator to see the cost of using our services for your concrete needs.
What are the next steps if I want to use your services?
Go to https://bankapply.eu/ and register as a free user. Don’t forget to check the FAQs page as well if you have any further questions. Once you register you can choose the number of banks you’d like to apply the account for (please note that it doesn’t mean we’re going to open, for example, 5 accounts for you. It means we apply for an account in 5 banks, which increases the likelihood of receiving a positive reply at least one of them, and ideally, will provide you with a choice between banks and you get to choose a better fee structure. At the end of the day it’s always your choice if you want to finalise the account opening process once a positive reply is received).