After registering the company in the selected jurisdiction and obtaining a cryptocurrency license, you will be able to open a bank account or payment system for your company.
Traditional banking institutions are very slow to adapt to the realities of the modern world, in which virtual currency is already very widely used. We help all our customers to open an account with European banks or payment systems that work with High Risk Business (Crypto, Gambling, Gaming, CBD, Adult). It is important to bear in mind that opening and maintaining an account of a company that operates in the High Risk area is more expensive and more difficult than other areas of business – the strictest rules apply to such activities, even at the stage of document collection.
In the course of more than five years of activity in FinTech, our employees have made a comparative analysis of a large number of banks/payment systems from different countries in Europe and have found the best solutions for opening accounts to companies working at High Risk Business.
Our banking experts are ready to accompany you at all stages of account opening for your company:
- Providing extended information about financial institutions (list of banks, payment systems that work with crypto-companies). This list includes: the jurisdiction to register a financial institution, the currency of settlement, the cost of account opening and maintenance, the date of account opening, the possibility of remote opening, SEPA/SWIFT. Negotiation and selection of a suitable financial institution
- Assistance in applying to open an account in the selected bank/payment system (completion of questionnaires and contact with the support service). Providing information about UBO, a board member of the company. Providing copies of documents of the participants of the company, confirmation of address of residence and, if necessary, sources of funding.
- Support the customer with additional questions from the bank/financial institution. Opening of an account, coordination of limits and commissions for account servicing. Full-fledged start-up of the company.
How to open an account for a cryptocurrency company
1) At the initial stage it is necessary to choose the country in which the effective regulation of cryptocurrencies is developed, and to choose the most suitable cryptocurrency-friendly bank or financial institution (payment service provider, electronic money institution, etc.). The main issues worth paying attention to are:
- Whether it is possible to receive and send funds between cryptocurrency accounts at the selected bank
- Does the bank allow the use of the account for doing business, related to cryptocurrencies
- Whether the bank is serving a company with a similar business model at the moment
- Bank’s reputation in the financial world and term of service
It is also important to understand whether a financial institution offers a full range of necessary services, including:
- International payments via SWIFT
- Debit Cards
- Card Release or Virtual IBAN
Although the number of financial institutions serving the crypto-currency business is growing, not all of them offer the full range of services needed for the crypto-currency business. Many of them offers only a payment account within the SEPA (Single Euro Payment Zone), while businesses dealing with virtual currencies usually want to open a cryptocurrency account and receive a full package of services: SWIFT payments, multi-currency accounts and payment cards.
2) In the second stage, the application for the opening of the account is completed. When applying to open an account for a crypto company, you must provide all the necessary information in full. This includes updating all corporate documents of the company (the company documents must be no older than three months) and providing a brief description of your business model. It is also necessary to attach to the completed questionnaires a proof of the license from the applicant company – a scan of the license issued or a link to the state portal where bank employees can verify the license. As a rule, the documents provided should be in English or, in rare cases, in the language of the country of the selected bank/financial institution. This means that all documents must be translated into English and notarized and apostilled.
Today, each cryptocurrency company is required to have anti-money laundering procedures, so it is necessary to specify internal procedures for AML, provide due diligence reports and possible results of external audits. When planning to open a cryptocurrency account, note that since cryptocurrency is considered to be a high-risk activity, this means that banks need to conduct extensive due diligence (EDD) under anti-money laundering laws. The main requirement is to understand the source of funds and the source of wealth of the company and its ultimate beneficial owners (UBO).
All documents relating to the source of funds for the company or its UBO must be checked. Part of the EDD process also includes verifying how the company collects and further manages customer data. Before opening an account for a cryptocurrency company, it is important for bank staff to make sure that the firm has developed processes to identify risks associated with potential money laundering and that these processes have been properly implemented in accordance with the anti-money laundering directives. The more complete a package of documents you provide, the higher the chances of opening a bank account to work with cryptocurrency.
If you are interested in the possibility of registering a crypto company in Europe, please note that jurisdictions such as Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, Malta, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Gibraltar, Ireland and Cyprus have also introduced cryptocurrency regulation and have the option of obtaining a license and legally engage in cryptocurrency activities.
Company registration under crypto activity
is administered by the Financial Supervisory Authority (FCA). FCA has developed and implemented regulations and policies on KYC, AML/CTF specifically designed for crypto-assets. The FCA has introduced requirements for Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASP), taking into account the freedom to promote their innovations.
As for opening an account for cryptocurrencies in the UK, there are cryptocurrency-friendly banks that allow customers to use their credit and debit cards, to freely buy and sell cryptocurrency, make bank transfers to cryptocurrency exchanges, withdraw funds from investments in cryptocurrency.
You can open a crypto account in one of the financial institutions of Gibraltar. This country is considered one of the leaders in the regulation of cryptocurrency in Europe. Cryptocurrency is not recognized here as a legal tender, but the exchange of virtual currencies is regulated at the legislative level. The country is characterized as a low-tax jurisdiction, so once a crypto company is registered in Gibraltar it will not be taxed on capital gains or dividends.
However, opening a cryptocurrency withdrawal account in this country is more difficult than registering a cryptocurrency company. Local banks are quite selective about applicants who want to work with cryptocurrency. Only a few of them work with such clients.
Small banks accept requests for cryptocurrency accounts in Gibraltar. To open a cryptocurrency account, you will need to confirm that you have a local physical office and the company has hired a local staff.
Cryptocurrencies in this country are treated as fin. tools according to the law. In July 2021, new licensing requirements for cryptocurrency companies in Germany were introduced. Under the new regulatory regime, the cryptocurrency business in Germany is strictly regulated and must be carried out in accordance with the Anti-Money Laundering Act.
It is possible to open an account for a crypto exchanger in Germany. The state has banks that specialize in working with jur. persons engaged in crypto activities. Such financial institutions offer a wide range of services to clients whose activity is linked with virtual currency.
Foreign investors who want to enter the crypto market in Europe, often stop their attention on Switzerland. The country, in particular its canton of Zug, is called European crypto-valley. The requirements for regulation of cryptocurrencies in Switzerland are strictly regulated. But Swiss banks are still quite cautious about clients whose activities are related to cryptocurrencies. There are not many institutions in the country that provide the opportunity to open an account for a crypto company.
Exceptions are Falcon Private Bank, which accepts investments in cryptocurrency, and Swissquote Bank and IG Bank, through which you can trade Bitcoin.
Also recently, the Swiss bank Hypothekarbank Lenzburg (Hypi) said, will provide an opportunity for foreign investors to open accounts for work with cryptocurrency. In all these institutions, applicants will be subject to rigorous KYC scrutiny. Those planning to open a cryptocurrency account in Switzerland will need to confirm the appointment of the Resident Director, the presence of a local office and a local staff.
The Maltese Government has developed clear regulations and requirements for the regulation of cryptocurrencies in Malta. In particular, these rules concerned the regulation of cryptocurrencies and ICOs, certification of platforms based on blockchain technology, licensing of technology providers. A special body of the Digital Innovation Authority was also established. Prior to these rules and regulations, Maltese banks often refused to open an account with a crypto company.
After the transformation of local legislation, it is possible to open an account on a crypto exchange in Malta, but only if a local company is registered. It is worth noting that Malta became one of the first jurisdictions where cryptocurrency-related activities are fully regulated and legal.
Since 2018, Liechtenstein has been considered one of the leading jurisdictions for the registration of crypto business in Europe. Its government has developed effective laws to encourage foreign investment by crypto companies to compete with states like Switzerland. Today, the launch of a crypto startup in Liechtenstein can be a beneficial solution for many foreign investors, as the industry of fintech is developing quite rapidly.
You can open an account for cryptocurrencies in Liechtenstein in several banks. But it is necessary to bear in mind that each client is subject to strict inspection and is examined individually, according to the strict rules of the institutions.
At present, Lithuania is becoming one of the most cryptocurrency friendly and attractive jurisdictions in the European Union, in which legal transactions with cryptocurrency are possible and clear requirements for the regulation of cryptocurrency business by the Financial Crime Investigation Service (FCIS) have been developed. The legal framework is regulated by the Law on the Prevention of Money Laundering. The Government regulates cryptocurrencies in Lithuania within the requirements of the Fifth EU Directive on Money Laundering (AMLD 5).
The Central Bank of Lithuania released its first digital currency in early 2020, LBCOIN. As a result, the country became more friendly to cryptocurrency, more than ever before, with more banks offering crypto accounts in Lithuania.
At the end of this review I would like to note that our company offers to its clients the opening of accounts only in the European country in which the cryptocurrency is regulated at the state level. When you open an account with your company in offshore jurisdictions or banks on other continents, you take great risks if you block an account or revoke a license from a selected financial institution, and often, in this case, it is not possible to return the full amount of the company’s funds.
If you are engaged in crypto-business, to avoid problems, we recommend conducting a risk assessment of your company by one of our specialists. This is because for traditional banks and financial institutions (EMI), cryptocurrency enterprises are still high-risk companies and opening an account requires careful preparation.
Our banking experts will select the most advantageous solution for your crypto-company that will save your time and money. We have conducted a comparative analysis of a large number of banks/payment systems and have found the best solutions to open an account for companies with high risk and are ready to accompany you at all stages of this difficult process.
At the moment, the main services of our company are legal and compliance solutions for FinTech projects. Our offices are located in Tallinn, Vilnius, Prague, and Warsaw. The legal team can assist with legal analysis, project structuring, and legal regulation.