Existing Digital Banks
In 2000, Singapore had announced its policy towards digital banking services, and had allowed all currently licensed banks to use digital platforms to provide their full range of services online. This has allowed existing banks to bring their services online. Clients could now access services that previously had to be done physically at automated teller machines (ATMs) or bank branch offices, online. This includes transfers, checking their account balance, check deposits, and opening up bank accounts.
The digital banks are equally relatively cheaper to manage. Consider the following banks against their monthly maintenance fee:
- Wirex Visa Card does not charge any monthly fee and supports 12 currencies
- Transferwise borderless also doesn’t charge and supports 6 currencies.
- Revolt standard supports up to 21 currencies yet imposes S$0 monthly fee. However, Revolt Premium charges S$9.99.
Digital Only Banks
An upcoming new form of banks is the digital-only bank. This is different from the digital offerings of traditional banks, in that these new banks will not necessarily have a physical presence in Singapore.
Singapore is not only the first country in the Asia-Pacific region to be issuing digital bank licenses. Japan, South Korea, and China have digital banks as well. Additionally, Hong Kong and Taiwan issued similar licenses.
What are the benefits of digital-only banks?
Some of the merits of digital-only banks include:
- They offer better rates and relatively lower fees during the transaction process.
- They guarantee better online experiences
- Less paperwork makes them preferred especially during this COVID era.
- They are less flexible with transactions.
These, among others, make digital banking in Singapore currently preferred by most investors who come into the country.
Which bank is right for you?
There are many different options available currently, with more digital-only banks to soon be operating. How do you decide which bank is right for your startup?
The main boon of a digital-only bank would be the reduced fees in their services, as they do not have to pay for the upkeep of brick and mortar branch offices or ATMs. The disadvantages would include an inability to easily withdraw cash, however, with more convenience stores offering cash withdrawal services, this could cease to be a problem soon.
However, service fees and rates are not the only important factor to decide on your banking needs. Especially so for a corporate bank account, you must ensure your bookkeeping is up to standard for your annual compliance needs. Working with a well-trained bank will ease this. The bank must also provide all the services you require for your banking needs and must be secure.
It is recommended to engage a trusted professional services firm, to advise you on the services each bank offers, and help you in deciding which bank will best serve you. Paul Hype Page has years of experience working with banks in Singapore and has a good relationship with these banks. We are well-versed in the needs of startups and will be able to identify the services you need.
Paul Hype Page’s preferred Neobank partner
Aspire is a Neobank that serves small businesses with convenient & inclusive financial services, currently operating across Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, Singapore. With Aspire, business owners can have fast and simple access to financial services for their business operations anywhere and at any time through their mobile phones. Aspire is operating under the Monetary Authority of Singapore in accordance with the Payment Services Act (No. 2 of 2019).
Opening an Aspire Business Account is free and requires no minimum deposit. The account can be opened entirely online with Paul Hype Page. There are no monthly fees, fall below
fees, or FAST transfer fees. Furthermore, Aspire also features significantly lower foreign transfer fees when compared to the banks, making their offering highly competitive in the market. More features can be found on their website: www.aspireapp.com
Generally, you can settle either on the digital or traditional bank in Singapore as they will offer you the best of services for your corporate or start-up business. You can choose from the existing range on which bank account that best suits you.