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Best business bank for foreign currency (Not including Neo-banks like Revolut)

  • 04-10-2021 11:20am
    Registered Users Posts: 5

    I'm setting up a limited company with two directors, I'm in ROI (Donegal) and the other director is in the UK.

    We will largely be working with non-EU clients. Billing in Dollars much of the time. Looking for a bank that isn't going to scalp us on exchange rates.

    (imagine if a $50k payment, have the bank convert that into Euros, then pay the director in £, it's going to be a significant hit...)

    from reading about Revolut and N26 on here they seem not quite ready to take on serious business, beyond solo/freelancer stuff.

    (I'd imagine we can set up a dollar account with say, BOI, but not sure how that works.)

    Any recommendations? Have had a search but realise this is quite a specific ask and couldn't find anything. Maybe other people working in cross-border area?

    Thanks in advance


  • Registered Users Posts: 196 ✭✭Repo101

    The big issue is billing in dollars. A bank account alone isn't going to solve the problem if your operating costs are in euro. If you must bill in dollars then you should just open up a normal euro business bank account and use a service like FexCo.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5 NameUnavailable

    Yeah currently (in my existing solo company) I simply put the details for a US Transferwise account on my invoices.

    Then when I get paid I directly transfer the money and can check the conversion rate.

    But I'm not quite sure how secure the deposits in that Transferwise Borderless account are?

    Thanks @Repo101 I'll take a look at Fexco. Am I right in thinking they work in the same way? Clients would make payment to our account with them, then we would transfer to our Euro account at our leisure?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,817 ✭✭✭Darc19

    You can negotiate with the main banks for a rate guarantee.

    I'm with AIB and have had a 0.25% off mid market rate for years and it automatically applies to all payments (online) I do in dollars and sterling.

    My value of transfers is not huge at circa €1m a year between the two currencies.

    So chat with the currency desk of whatever bank you are with and get an agreement

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,739 ✭✭✭mneylon

    If you're dealing in large enough volumes / amounts you can negotiate better rates from most banks - basically you fix the rate for X amount of a currency.

    However I wouldn't dismiss Revolut etc., they work very well for FOREX stuff I've no idea why you'd think otherwise


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,817 ✭✭✭Darc19

    Try explaining to a customer in the USA that your bank is in "Lithuania" and you are based in Ireland.

    Then you also have the issue of inputting an Irish address, but a Lithuanian bank account. Some systems don't allow that as they are programmed to look for 22 digits in the Iban whereas the revolut is 20 digits.

    Yes you can "buy" a forward rate with banks to have certainty and also as I said above, you can negotiate a margin off mid market that will usually beat or match the likes of transferwise. All main banks will also allow you set up a US dollar account so that you can payout in US dollars if needed from US dollar income.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 5 NameUnavailable

    Thanks for the advice, much appreciated.

    It's precisely that issue I have with Revolut etc @mneylon as @Darc19 mentioned. It looks a bit ropey and in particular, in the US I've had issues with clients being confused and uncomfortable as to why they're being asked to transfer to strange countries. Particularly when they are dealing with 99% US contacts, and we're the outlier - anything we can do to smooth that over is good with me.

    Transferwise borderless is good because it does supply a US IBAN/account for your invoices, but even then the name of the company is listed as 'Transferwise' as opposed to the name of your own company, so it's not fully seamless. Has done me so far but I think i'll go into the bank and try and see what they can offer first, and then following that have a look at the rates with Fexco etc.

    Thanks for the input all.