Business banking is an essential service for businesses and the country at large and it’s high time we focused on it. We will run through the various business or corporate banking options from commercial banks and building societies in Zimbabwe. The goal of the article is to acquaint you with the options available in the landscape and aid you in whether you are looking to open a business bank account or perhaps looking for a different service provider.
You will find business accounts more often referred to by the banks as corporate accounts. This is because they are generally eligible to incorporated entities in the form of registered companies. So for those who want to open a new account altogether and are unfamiliar with the process expect the bank to require most if not all of the following from you;
- Certified copy of Memorandum and Articles of Association, Certificate of Incorporation,
- Certified copy of Current CR2 or Letter on company letterhead confirming shareholders
- Certified copy of Current CR14
- Certified copy of Current CR6 (Physical address of the company’s principal place of business)
- Passport photos of all signatories
- Proof of residence for directors (utility bill, within 3 months of the date of request)
- Certified copy of each Director’s identity document/passport, or driver’s licence
- Current Tax Clearance Certificate
- Completed KYC Update form which will be provided at the Branch
BancABC offers a business current account which includes the ability to manage the account and transact online. The current account has an overdraft facility. The requirements for this account are a minimum opening deposit of US$1000 and that the business has been operating for more than 3 months. In addition to this BancABC also offers business loans and term deposit investments.
CBZ offers a host of services under business banking. Their current account boasts key features that include internet banking, eCommerce (support), VISA Gold card and Point of Sale (POS) systems. They have two accounts available, the corporate banking account and the corporate account which adds bankers functions such as guarantees and an overdraft facility. The former account has a minimum balance of US$100 while the latter has no minimum. Both accounts pay interest up to 0.3% per annum.
The bank offers many services under corporate banking. They offer Business Nostro Foreign Currency accounts (USD), Business Current Accounts (ZW$), SME Current account (ZW$), Investment (call) accounts and Fixed-term deposit accounts. For the 3 business banking accounts, the minimum balances are US$25 (Nostro FCA), ZW$1500 (Business Current Account) and ZW$500 (SME current account) while the two investment accounts have minimum deposits of ZW$10000.
Standard Chartered Bank Zimbabwe offers a host of business banking services and they offer business banking under the banner of straight2bank. This offers the ability to transact via online methods and multiple currency accounts. This is particularly useful if you have international payments to consider which the bank facilitates with a network in over 130 countries. In addition to this, they also provide import services, letters of credit, bank guarantees and performance bonds.
The first capital bank offers a truly competitive business banking solution for its clients. Clients of the bank can expect a debit card, access to credit, access to payroll solutions, internet banking and interest-bearing accounts. The bank also offers foreign currency account solutions for businesses.
CABS offers the Gold transaction account which they say is suitable for both individuals and businesses. The features include Debit card, Point of sale machines, Payroll services and internet banking. In addition to this CABs also offers business loans, international transfers, insurance and custodial services.
ZB provides a wide array of services under their SME banking. Along with the current account, businesses will also get an overdraft facility, invoice financing, bankers guarantees, bankers acceptances. The bank goes further to extend Capital expenditure loans and fixed asset lease arrangements.
Steward Bank has a corporate banking offering. The bank specifically states that they have a strategic focus on businesses in health, renewable energy and exporters. Each of these areas of focus has a dedicated finance facility available through the bank. The bank also provides working capital and asset finance.
The POSB offers 3 accounts under its corporate banking bouquet. The corporate account offers an overdraft facility, international payments, Point of sale systems, payroll services and a dedicated relationship manager. The SME account which they say can cater to sole proprietors though it also requires the company registration documents. It is suited to smaller businesses. Finally, they offer an Agribusiness account which can be registered for by individuals and provides similar facilities to the other two but is targeted at those in agriculture.
FBC offers a Corporate Current account which offers payroll services, international payments, Internet banking and card services. The bank also offers loans and overdraft facilities to corporate banking clients as well as term deposit arrangements.
Stanbic Bank offers a corporate current account that is suitable for SMEs. The account is also available to informal incorporated organisations though they will still have to satisfy certain criteria. The account offers electronic and internet banking as well as overdraft facilities.
Ecobank has a product called the Commercial Account. The bank offers many of the same services as others including internet banking but they go the extra mile. They also offer a bouquet of digital-focused add-ons including a Google My Business account and QR code payment system. They also offer loans, trade finance and cash management solutions.
Nedbank offers a comprehensive host of business banking accounts, the highest number I came across while doing this research. With 4 different accounts and one particularly tailored for early-stage businesses, they are definitely worth a shout. The bank also offers loan facilities, trade finance, bank guarantees and asset leasing.
And there you have it. If you are looking for a bank I suggest you use the shopping around approach and apply to all the banks that offer the services you are looking for. This will give you the best vantage point to decide from.