30/05/2024

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How To Open a Corporate Bank Account in The Bahamas?

How To Open a Corporate Bank Account in The Bahamas?

The Bahamas’ business-friendly policies, efficient regulations, and dedication to economic diversification make it a prime destination for foreign investment. Business owners are drawn to The Bahamas for its thriving and tax-friendly business environment.

Understanding how to open a corporate bank account in The Bahamas is a key step for a successful launch, offering financial stability and seamless international transactions.

As an ideal location for foreign investors, this island nation has a selection of reputable banks. Read on to discover how to open a corporate bank account in The Bahamas. 

See also: Company Formation Bahamas

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Learn the Advantages of business if you want to Open a Corporate Bank Account in The Bahamas

Can foreigners open a bank account in The Bahamas?

Yes, non-residents have the option to open bank accounts in The Bahamas. The majority can avail themselves of private, investment, and personal account types, and the process can be conveniently completed entirely remotely. 

However, selecting a bank requires careful consideration, as not all banks in The Bahamas cater to foreign non-residents, provide private account services, facilitate remote openings, and various account opening requirements must be navigated.

What do you need to open a corporate bank account in The Bahamas? 

To start the process of opening a corporate bank account in The Bahamas, you will be required to complete an application and provide the following information:

  • Current Business License
  • Certificate of Incorporation
  • Current Certificate of Good Standing (if incorporated for more than a year)
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association
  • Current Certificate of Incumbency (with company’s seal affixed)
  • Current Register of Officers (Registrar General Stamp affixed)
  • Current Register of Directors (Registrar General Stamp affixed)
  • Current Register of Shareholders (Registrar General Stamp affixed)
  • Current Year Annual Return/Statement (Registrar General Stamp affixed)
  • Business Plan
  • Business Accounts & Services Application (BASA)  
  • 1 Credit Reference Letter on all Signatories, Officers, Directors, and Shareholders of the Company
  • 1 Credit Reference Letter on the business (if an existing business)
  • 2 forms of ID for all Signatories, Officers, Directors, and Shareholders of the Company – Primary: Passport or Voter’s Card; Secondary: Driver’s License or NIB Card.
  • Proof of address for all Signatories, Officers, Directors, and Shareholders of the Company – Utility Bill or Voter’s Card.
  • Proof of address for the Business; if storefront.
      –  Utility Bill
      –  Lease Agreement

Work with a local expert to streamline the process

Partnering with law firms or consultants is the best approach to start the bank opening procedure. While opening a corporate bank account in The Bahamas can be easy, certain aspects need consideration. Therefore, working with a local partner becomes crucial, ensuring comprehensive assistance.

Choose the right bank in The Bahamas for your business

Banks in The Bahamas offer tailored solutions designed to meet your company’s unique needs, whether it’s establishing investment accounts, accommodating flexible payment methods, or facilitating international transfers. Choosing a bank that aligns perfectly with your business requirements is crucial.

Here are five reputable banks in The Bahamas:

  1. Royal Bank of Canada Bahamas: With a century-long history, RBC has played a pivotal role in the growth of the banking sectors in the Bahamas and the Caribbean. RBC Financial Caribbean is not merely a bank but a versatile financial services powerhouse offering a broad spectrum of services.
  2. Scotiabank The Bahamas: Established in 1956, Scotiabank in the Bahamas grew its presence with branches in Nassau and Freeport in the 1960s. Officially incorporated in 1998, it is headquartered at Rawson Square. With around 700 employees, Scotiabank operates 69 ATMs and 19 branches, offering a wide range of services for retail and commercial clients. 
  3. CIBC First Caribbean International Bank: This bank boasts a deep historical roots, dating back to the establishment of its first branches in 1920. The bank primarily generates revenue through its operations in Barbados, the Bahamas, and the Cayman Islands.
  4. Bank of The Bahamas: The Bank of The Bahamas, commonly referred to as BOB, is renowned for spearheading innovations in the Bahamas’ retail banking sector. Notably, they were pioneers in introducing VISA gift and prepaid cards, simplifying financial management for customers. Furthermore, BOB was the first local bank to offer extensive online banking services, enabling customers to access their accounts conveniently from any location. 
  5. Commonwealth Bank: Commonwealth Bank, from its inception, has remained steadfast in upholding core values and a commitment to community service. This dedication encompasses providing assistance during difficult times and actively participating in educational initiatives. Celebrating its 60th anniversary, the bank recognizes substantial growth and success attained over the years. Evolving into a dynamic and versatile organization, Commonwealth Bank adeptly addresses a diverse spectrum of financial needs.
About the Currencies used in the Bahamas, graphic by Biz Latin Hub, for an article about  Open a Corporate Bank Account in The Bahamas
 Learn about the currencies in the country if you want to Open a Corporate Bank Account in The Bahamas

Common Questions on Opening a Corporate Bank Account in the Bahamas

Based on our extensive experience, these are the common questions and doubts of our clients on opening a company bank account in the Bahamas.

1. Can I open a corporate bank account online in the Bahamas?

The ability to open a corporate bank account online in the Bahamas may vary among banks. It is recommended to check with specific banks in the Bahamas to understand their online account opening procedures and requirements.

2. What documents do I need to open a company bank account in the Bahamas?

The required documents for opening a company bank account in the Bahamas may vary by bank but typically include:

– Certificate of Incorporation
– Memorandum and Articles of Association
– Business license
– Valid identification for each director and authorized signatory
– Proof of address for each director and authorized signatory
– Business plan or financial statements
– Resolution authorizing the opening of the account

3. Who can have access to a company bank account in the Bahamas?

Access to a company bank account in the Bahamas is typically granted to authorized signatories and individuals specified in the account documentation. The specifics may vary, and it’s essential to clarify account access details with the bank during the account opening process.

4. What is the best bank in the Bahamas for foreign companies?

The choice of the best bank for foreign companies in the Bahamas depends on various factors such as services offered, fees, and specific needs of the business. Some of the well-known banks in the Bahamas include the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), Commonwealth Bank, and Bank of The Bahamas International. Research and compare services and fees to determine the best fit for your company.

5. Why do companies open bank accounts in the Bahamas?

Companies may choose to open bank accounts in the Bahamas for several reasons, including:

– Tax advantages: The Bahamas offers a tax-neutral environment with no corporate income, capital gains, or inheritance tax.
– Financial privacy: The country has strong financial privacy laws, making it attractive for those seeking confidentiality in financial matters.
– Stability: The Bahamas has a stable political and economic environment, making it a secure location for financial activities.

Biz Latin Hub can help you open a corporate bank account in The Bahamas

At Biz Latin Hub, we provide integrated market entry and back-office services throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, with offices in major cities in the region. 

We also have trusted partners in many other markets. Our unrivaled reach means we are ideally placed to support multi-jurisdiction market entries and cross-border operations.

As well as knowledge about how to open a corporate bank account in The Bahamas, our range of services includes hiring & PEO accounting & taxation, company formation, bank account opening, and corporate legal services.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can assist you in finding top talent or doing business in Latin America and the Caribbean.

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The information provided here within should not be construed as formal guidance or advice. Please consult a professional for your specific situation. Information provided is for informative purposes only and may not capture all pertinent laws, standards, and best practices. The regulatory landscape is continually evolving; information mentioned may be outdated and/or could undergo changes. The interpretations presented are not official. Some sections are based on the interpretations or views of relevant authorities, but we cannot ensure that these perspectives will be supported in all professional settings.