New business banking options in the e-Residency Marketplace

Always a hot topic in our community, here is an update on the latest banking options for e-residents: EE IBANs are here!

Working to provide as many banking options as possible for e-resident entrepreneurs is a top priority for the e-Residency team. In 2021, we’ve added four new business banking providers to the e-Residency Marketplace, and we are always on the hunt for more. 

We are also happy to announce that two of the new fintech banking options in our Marketplace offer Estonian (EE) IBANs, making it easier to connect these accounts with payment platforms and online marketplaces, reducing the risk of IBAN discrimination. 

We want to be clear that e-resident entrepreneurs are always free to choose the banking options that work best for them. In fact, e-residents have business accounts with all traditional banks in Estonia and most major European fintech companies that offer corporate accounts. You can find a list of all licensed banks in Estonia here. 

Through our Marketplace, however, we list banking providers that understand the needs of e-residents, are willing to continually improve the onboarding experience for e-residents, and offer additional services such as Estonian share capital registration. This listing process involves careful due diligence about the reputation and operations of service providers — banking or otherwise — by the e-Residency team. Read more about how we select service providers for inclusion on the Marketplace.

In the spirit of transparency, it’s also important to remember that banking providers are free to set their own rules regarding which customers they serve, so a banking option that works well for one person or type of business might not work for everyone.

Make sure you visit the banking section of our knowledge base to find detailed guides and other information about business banking for e-residents. 

New business banking options in the Marketplace 

Wamo

Wamo–one of the newest members of the e-Residency Marketplace– is an “all-in-one financial management platform that makes it easier, simpler and faster to stay on top of running a business.” 

Wamo provides an EE IBAN for their euro accounts, making it easier to connect your account with certain online payment platforms. 

Services

  • International payments
  • SEPA payments
  • Estonian IBAN
  • BIC / Swift
  • Payment gateway
  • Debit / credit / prepaid cards
  • Debit cards / Virtual debit cards
  • Multi-currency wallet

Costs

  • Business banking account opening — 99,99 EUR
  • Business banking account fee — 19,99-99,99 EUR/Month

View Wamo’s Marketplace profile here and read more about Wamo joining the e-Residency Marketplace on their blog:

Payhawk

Payhawk joined the e-Residency Marketplace a few months ago, and was the first fintech to be listed that offered an Estonian (EE) IBAN for its euro accounts. 

Payhawk describes itself as “the financial system of tomorrow that combines credit cards, payments, expenses, cash management, and pre-accounting into one integrated experience to give you maximum control and visibility over your business spend.”

Overview of services 

  • International payments
  • SEPA payments
  • Estonian IBAN
  • BIC / Swift
  • Debit / credit / prepaid card
  • Debit cards — 8 EUR/Month
  • Virtual debit cards

Costs

  • NextGen Cards — 90 EUR/Month
  • Premium Spend — 180 EUR/Month

You can view their Marketplace profile here and read more about why Payhawk joined the e-Residency Marketplace here on their blog

Coop Pank

Coop Pank (not a typo, “pank” is bank in Estonian!) is the latest traditional Estonian bank to join the e-Residency Marketplace alongside longtime member LHV. 

Coop’s mission is “to support international entrepreneurs with our services, offering fast and flexible solutions, through which we support the Estonian economy.”

As with all traditional Estonian banks, Coop requires a strong connection with Estonia – either at least 50% of employees or partners located in Estonia or at least 50% of all transactions tied to Estonia – and one face-to-face meeting to complete the account opening process.

If you meet these requirements and are looking to access services that only a traditional bank can provide, then definitely check them out. 

Services 

  • International payments
  • SEPA payments
  • Share capital contribution payments (and proof letter)
  • Estonian IBAN
  • BIC / Swift
  • Debit cards
  • Accepting payments via Banklink
  • Personal company account manager
  • Credit card

Costs 

  • Business banking account opening — 200-500 EUR
  • Business banking account fee — 20-100 EUR/Month

View Coop’s Marketplace profile here and their announcement on Linkedin:

Intergiro 

Intergiro hails from Sweden, and offers “multi-currency banking, virtual cards, plastic cards, SE and GB IBAN issuing, together with a full BaaS API.”

Services 

  • International payments
  • SEPA payments
  • Swedish / British IBAN
  • BIC / Swift
  • Payment gateway
  • Business banking account fee — from 9 EUR/Month
  • Prepaid virtual card — 1 EUR
  • Prepaid physical card — 3 EUR

Costs

  • Starter — 9 EUR/Month
  • Growth — 29 EUR/Month
  • Professional — 49 EUR/Month
  • Enterprise (Bespoke packages with custom pricing)

View Intergiro’s Marketplace profile here and find out how to open a business banking account on their website:

Accept my IBAN

Earlier this year, the e-Residency programme proudly joined a campaign founded by leading fintechs in Europe, including Estonia’s own Wise and Monese, aimed at tackling the issue of IBAN discrimination. 

As a quick reminder, IBAN discrimination occurs when a bank or service provider requires the IBAN of a person or business they are transacting with to have a particular country code.

IBAN discrimination is against the law in the EU — see Article 9 of Regulation (EU) No 260/2012. The law has been in force since 2014 but due to low enforcement in practice, IBAN discrimination is still commonplace.

The Accept my IBAN campaign has now collected thousands of instances of IBAN discrimination, passing this information to policymakers at the EU and national level across Europe to highlight the extent of the issue.

In addition to joining this important campaign, we are continuing to highlight the issue of IBAN discrimination with our own regulators and policymakers here in Estonia.

If you have faced IBAN discrimination, be sure to report it on the Accept my IBAN website. 

What’s next? 

The world of business banking has been turned upside down with the growth of remote work and cross-border business. Despite the incredible innovation in the world of fintech, regulators around the world have largely failed to keep up, still living in a world that assumes a bank account, a company, and its owners live and serve clients in one place. 

Part of our mission at e-Residency is to enable “business without borders,” and that includes making sure our community has access to the financial tools they need to run a successful business around the world. 

Right now, we are confident that the majority of e-residents can access the financial tools they need to grow their business. Our banking survey results confirm this. Earlier this year, e-Residency surveyed e-residents regarding their experiences with business banking for their Estonian companies. 1313 people responded to the survey, which covered a broad range of issues related to business banking relevant for e-residents who have registered Estonian companies.

When asked where they held business banking accounts for their Estonian companies, 66% of respondents had accounts with fintechs, 32% with Estonian banks, and 10% with a traditional bank in Europe. 7% did not have a business banking account.

It’s encouraging that 93% of respondents had some form of business banking account for their Estonian company even before the four new banking service providers joined the e-Residency Marketplace.

But there is still room to improve. Of the 7% who responded to the survey that they didn’t have a business banking account, three fifths said they had unsuccessfully applied for an account, just under one fifth had an account that was closed by the banking institution, and the remaining one fifth either had not got around to opening an account or said they didn’t need one.

This confirms that while e-Residency has made it possible for thousands of entrepreneurs to start and run a business fully online from anywhere in the world, a small percentage of e-residents continue to face issues accessing financial tools for their business. Hopefully the new options covered above go some way to help those in this category.

And of course, we will continue to work with innovative new financial companies and established banks, who are interested in serving the needs of our community of e-residents, to grow the options available and ensure more entrepreneurial people can take advantage of Estonia’s open, digital business environment. 

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