We totally understand if you feel Singapore can be the best breeding ground for innovative seeds of your business ideas because it is undoubtedly the stalwart among the southeast nations for its strategic geographical location, political stability, state-of-the-art infrastructure, and business-friendly policies. In this article, we emphasize the process involved in owning a business account, no matter if you are a budding entrepreneur or a seasoned business tycoon.
Let us explore the word picture of diverse offerings of business accounts, eligibility and requirements for acquiring business accounts, and how some of the key players of Singapore provide these crucial services. From conventional banking mode to providing tailored digital services, Singapore has come a long way to enhance its financial landscape and cater to the ever-evolving needs of businesses in the nation.
Singapore offers a variety of corporate business accounts for different types of companies to handle all sorts of business transactions. Singapore’s Monetary Authority (MAS) is the regulatory agency that oversees the acquisition and regulation of all types of corporate accounts, and it also handles the financial operations of all the banks and financial institutions of the country.
What is the process of owning a business account in Singapore?
Different banks have varying eligibility criteria for account opening charges, maintaining a minimum balance ranging from 500 SGD to higher amounts, documentation involved, etc. Hence, before you zero down on a particular bank or financial institution, it is recommended to consider the following factors:
- Suppose you are starting with low business capital. In that case, selecting a bank with an extremely high demand for maintaining a minimum balance can burden you financially even before your business starts performing. Therefore, choosing a bank with the mediocre requirement of maintaining 1000 SGD as the initial capital is ideal for SMEs. At least with this amount, your business account is set, and you always have the option to transfer more funds if more capital pours in from other business partners.
- Looking for a business account that can waive off a maximum amount is another vital element to save your funds for other essential business activities, such as procuring funds for paying for goods in advance, renting or buying space for an office, etc.
- Like personal bank accounts, most business bank accounts have this rule of maintaining a minimum monthly balance, and failing to do so will result in paying monthly penalty fees. So, it is wise to compare such prices of several banks and select the one with the lowest offering.
- The business account provider should be able to provide other digital services like Internet banking, mobile banking, corporate debit and credit cards, and e-alerts. Business owners can stay on top of all their payments and transactions. Apart from these, the large network of branches and ATMs is also a bonus for businesses that seek to operate globally.
- Some banks in Singapore are doing way beyond just banking by providing digital solutions to their customers in collaboration with cloud-based accounting software platforms. So that they can access daily insights on business cashflows automatically. Now, that’s how banks can leverage technology to enhance their relationship with their clients.
Let’s take a look at the eligibility criteria for having a business account in the country:
- Business account opening is available for all individuals irrespective of nationality, which is the best thing about Singapore’s business policies. However, passport and visa documents are compulsory for foreign applications.
- The account can be opened in both online and offline modes; for the offline process, a representative must act on behalf of the organization to conduct all the dealings.
- Applicants must ensure that their companies are free from lawsuits or criminal proceedings against them. The same goes for directors, board members, and prominent shareholders of the company.
The necessary documents are:
- Bank application form
- Power of attorney for representatives who act on behalf of any organization.
- Signed copies of directors’ and shareholders’ resolutions about opening a company.
- The residential address proof of the beneficial owners must be at most three months old.
- The resolution must be taken to open a bank account on behalf of the company that should consist of the account’s signatories and must be signed by the company secretary.
- The corporate bank account form must be viewed and signed by all the signatories.
- Any documentation provided on demand by the banking institution should be certified as per the records by the director or company secretary.
These were some of the basic pointers one must remember before reaching out to avail a wide array of services provided by some of the leading corporate banks in Singapore.
Not only does the reputation of banks matter, but other factors like their expertise in the services they provide, alignment of their banking objectives with our business goals, and the flexibility they offer for choosing the types of business accounts are only some of the essential factors we must consider and research well before jumping to the ultimate conclusion.