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Accounts & Cards

Bank Accounts for Startups: Getting It Right

What should you consider when choosing a bank to work with as you found and grow your startup in Switzerland? Find useful information in this guide.

Bank accounts are currently a must-have for startups and other new businesses. While you may be able to pull off running a small business or sole proprietorship without a bank account, there is no way to get around banks when you found a limited liability company or a corporation because you will need a capital payment account in order to register the company in a cantonal commercial register.

A capital payment account is a form of escrow account in which capital required by law in order to found a limited liability company or a corporation is held until the company has been registered. After that, the assets can be transferred to a business account. You can find more information in the guide to capital payment accounts.

Choosing the right business account for your startup

A business account is an account into which your business can receive incoming financial transactions and from which you can make outgoing transactions. In Switzerland, many business accounts are current accounts. Current accounts provide a liquidity solution by allowing your business to obtain small business loans on demand in the form of account overdrafts. The annual interest rates applicable to ovedrafts are shown on the "Info" pages of business accounts listed in the business account comparison. Some Swiss banks offer special, attractive conditions for startups. Almost all banks issue debit cards and business credit cards along with business accounts upon request.

Here are some of the most important things to consider when choosing the right bank:

  • Costs: Fees charged for capital payment accounts and for financial transactions made using business accounts vary significantly between banks. The comprehensive business account comparison on accounts for all relevant costs based on the specific needs of your business or startup. You can request free quotes directly from the comparison.
  • Services: If you need special services like financial consultation or compatibility with specific accounting software, make sure that an account meets all of your criteria before opening it. Take time to consider the future needs of your business as well because changing business accounts once your business is up and running can be problematic. You can use the “Services” filters provided in the business account comparison to find accounts which match your criteria.
  • Business loans: If you need a business loan, take the time to compare loans and to request unbinding quotes from multiple banks before you make any loan applications. The reason for this is that each loan application is recorded and can affect your creditworthiness. There is no reason to take out loans from the bank which manages your business accounts if another lender charges lower interest. You can compare business loans using the business loan comparison.

More on this topic:
Swiss business account comparison
Swiss business loan comparison

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Expert Benjamin Manz
Benjamin Manz is CEO of and an independent expert on banking and finance.
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