Choose US Bank for international company


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I'm opening an Delaware LLC, and now choosing where to open bank account. My company is a very small consulting firm (software development, and we're going to run own product). We're located in Russia, but most of our client are from the US, and it's our target market.

Currently I'm looking for a bank with following conditions:

  • have convenient online access (that should work in Chrome + MacOS, not only IE + Win)
  • we aren't able to visit US office frequently, only 1-2 times a year
  • we're going to have 1-10 local and international money transfer per month, and online payments, by using debit card (hosting, etc)
  • should be not very expensive for a small biz
  • allow to make international wire transfers, using only online bank
  • have office in NYC (and, probably, in Delaware)

Could you please make any suggestions?

PS I've experience with TD Bank, and found that it doesn't fit my needs. TD Bank Online Solution is very outdated, it's something from late 90x, you can do only basic things, everything else, including wire transfer, requires personal visit. As I understood after googling, it's versy common, people have same problem with other banks (Wells Fargo for example), my friend has Citi Bank, and he says that its the worst online bank he knows.

So, I'm looking for a modern bank, with a powerful online banking service.

LLC International Bank

asked Nov 7 '12 at 01:41
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Igor Artamonov
113 points
  • Have you selected a bank at this stage? What was your choice? – Nikolay Shmyrev 7 years ago

1 Answer


2

There's a huge amount of banks you can choose from. You should probably check with the larger ones (like Bank of America, Chase, Citi, Wells Fargo) and see if they have a branch in Russia. Some international banks (HSBC for example) have presence both in the US and Russia, which may be of convenience for you.

All the banks will provide you the services you need, and you can always work via fax and Fedex where the online services are not available. International wire transfers are likely not to be available online (at least at first, repetitive transfers might be available, but do look around, may be you can find a bank that does allow that).

Clarifying a bit...

In the US it is very rarely that the banks allow international wire transfers on-line. Usually, at least for the first transfer, you have to come in and fill a form, after that (with some) you can do repetitive transfers online.

Thing to remember - in the US international transfers are always SWIFT. Yes, we're retarded. No IBAN for you. That means that you cannot identify the recipient reliably, and have to pay much higher fees. Within the US, you can use ACH payments instead of wire transfers that would be cheaper but slower.

Most, if not all, banks allow paying bills on-line for free. Debit cards are usually free, and check deposit on-line or through a smart-phone app are usually free (notable exceptions that I'm aware of: US Bank charges a fee for that, and Wells Fargo doesn't support it at all).

Bottom line is that there are very minor differences between the services banks offer, but you have to shop around to find what you like the most: convenience of the web site (purely subjective measurement), functionality (easy to compare, most banks have charts to show what they support), fees (again, easy to compare), etc.

Re the small business vs. huge business - most banks have different layers of activity support vs fees, so you can start small and grow, within the same bank.

If you're hiring a US accountant/bookkeeper, you might want to consider things such as QuickBooks support and integration, and fees for that: some banks charge, others don't.

answered Nov 7 '12 at 04:37
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Littleadv
5,090 points
  • Actually i'm not looking for presence in Russian. Citi, Chase, HSBC have russian branches, it's useless at most cases, issues with russian law for alien banks. Btw, HSBC is only for huge biz, we can't afford such prices :( – Igor Artamonov 7 years ago
  • If presence in Russia is of no benefit to you then practically any bank will serve your needs. You'll probably have to physically be there to open the account, so just chose of those around the hotel you're staying at. – Littleadv 7 years ago
  • Thanks @littleadv for you help! It's more question about online bank, I understand that 'money account' is the same for all banks. As I see, most banks have very basic and limited online solutions, but I'm in situation when I need a powerful online banking – Igor Artamonov 7 years ago
  • @Igor, updated the answer a bit to summarize the concerns. – Littleadv 7 years ago

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