Digging for information on which bank to choose for their business entity, what procedures to go through, and which corporate bank account requirements are to be fulfilled is a foregone conclusion for every potential business owner. Well, different banks have slightly different procedures but the basic requirement stays the same all around. Moreover, opening a corporate bank account for your company is what consummates company incorporation in Nigeria. So, here’s a guide for foreigners on how to open a business/corporate account in Nigeria along with the list of anything and everything one would need to do so.
Benefits of Opening a Corporate Business Account in Nigeria
By opening a corporate business account once you register your Nigeria business, it will be easier for you to maintain the cash flow, and work out through your tax liability for the year. Here are the reasons why you should have a corporate bank account.
You always want your business to maintain a professional appearance. If you keep your business finances by opening a bank account, that helps enhance your image of professionalism.
2. Accurate Tax and Deductions
A business bank account helps to ensure you file taxes accurately. You look at your business account statement and record the figures on your tax return. Accurately filing taxes becomes harder when you mix personal expenses in the same account. If you do not file taxes accurately, you could face IRS penalties.
3. Clean and Accurate Bookkeeping
No one wants to deal with the mess of mixing the business and personal transactions. If you have a separate account for your business transactions, you have a clean record to give to your accountant at the end of the year. You can also have a separate accounting and bookkeeping services for keeping it clean and accurate right from the start.
How to Open a Corporate Bank Account in Nigeria?
While different banks have slightly different procedures for opening a bank account, the basic procedure and requirements are still the same across all the banks. Most of the banks operating in Nigeria provide wide range of services to their clients with multiple features like ability to transfer funds from Nigeria to other country, trade facilities, debit and credit card, internet banking, and multi-currency account. A business bank account allows you to easily keep track of expenses, manage employees pay, convey finances to investors, receive deposit payment, and plan your budget accordingly. To open your corporate bank accounts in Nigeria follow the below-mentioned steps.
1. Select a Bank
The first and foremost step while opening your bank account is to determine the bank you want to open an account into. Every bank provides various types of incentives to its account holders, you need to research on which type of incentives you need for your business and go for that bank.
2. Get Your Paperwork in Order
Before heading to the bank to set up an account, make sure you know their requirements and what paperwork they will need from you, since different accounts have different specifications. Often, what you will need is a tax ID number. They will also ask for your business license or a business name filing document.
3. Fill the Application
You can easily find the application to open the bank account in the bank’s official website. Download the same by filing all the required details and submit the same to the bank with documents that you have gathered in the step 2
4. Provide your Business License
The official license of the business after registration must be given accordingly to the bank. The business license serves as a proof of business legitimacy and validity. In addition, business registration documents may work along with a business license.
5. Provide your Tax ID Number
Businesses are answerable while paying their revenues. Therefore, your special business Tax pin or Pin Number is required when opening a business or corporate bank account.
There is also a requirement to submit your business name registered in Nigeria, usually designated as DBA “Doing Business As”. Of course, your business license and certificate of registration also has this name. Remember that while opening the account relevant references or signatories for your business account must be present in the bank. Once you follow all the steps, submit documents, and be physically present in the bank to sign all the relevant documents, your business bank account will be opened in nick of time.
Documents Required to Open a Corporate Bank Account in Nigeria
- Resolution from the Board of Directors/Proprietor(s) authorizing the opening of the account and approving the account signatories
- A company seal
- Certified Memorandum and Articles of Association (MeMat)
- Completely filled corporate account opening form signed by the company’s designated signatories
- Certified true copies of incorporation documents (Form CO7)
- Residential address proof of signatories and directors
- Passports photograph of the signatories
- Bank Verification Number of directors or proprietor
- Legitimate identification document of the directors or proprietors, such as international passport, driver’s license, etc.
- Tax Identification Number (TIN) for the company
- Utility bill of business addresses such as the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), water bill, Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), etc.
- Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering (SCUML) registration where applicable
- Special requirements such as business permit, residence permit, etc. for foreigner nationals
- 2 duly filled reference forms by corporate account holders
Minimum Opening Balance for a Nigerian Corporate Account
The minimum opening balance for a Nigerian corporate bank account varies depending upon the bank. Usually, the monetary sum for opening a current account ranges from N 5,000 to N 100,000.
Top 10 banks in Nigeria
Few of the most preferred banks to open a corporate bank account in Nigeria are:
- Zenith Bank
- Guaranty Trust Bank
- First Bank
- Access Bank
- United Bank of Africa
- Fidelity Bank
- Eco Bank Nigeria
- Skye Bank
- First City Monument Bank
- Diamond Bank
Opening a Nigerian corporate account is very beneficial for entrepreneurs having business set up in Nigeria, especially an e-commerce business. Furthermore, having a corporate business account in Nigeria allows one's business to accept Naira payments online, which is again a plus point. So, if you are seeking some professional assistance to guide you better on which bank to go for and how the whole procedure goes then you are on the right platform as our advisors at Business Setup Worldwide are here to help you with the drill. We commit to give world-class consultancy and all type of support services. For any queries on Nigerian corporate bank account for your company, do contact us – we’d be happy to help.