How to open a business bank account in Nigeria: Using your personal account as the same account for your business is not advisable because there many downsides to that. First and foremost, it sounds unprofessional to do that because customers and client expect you to have your own business account. Also, managing the money for your business and your personal life might be difficult when you use your personal bank account as a business account.
These are just some of the reasons why it is good to have a business account for your business. Now, in registering your business, it is important to know that your business must first be registered according to the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA). This is the basic law that guides companies in Nigeria.
In Nigeria, the procedure for opening a business bank account actually differs from bank to bank. However, they all have similar requirements and steps. Consequent upon this, I will be taking a general view of how to open a business bank account in this article.
Requirements for opening a corporate business bank account in Nigeria
Below are the documents required for a business bank account in Nigeria:
1. Current addresses of the directors.
2. Bank Verification Number (BVN) of directors.
3. Legitimate identification document of the directors such as international passport, driver’s license, etc.
4. Recent passport photograph of the signatories.
5. Board Resolution from the Board of Directors authorizing the opening of the account and approving the account signatories
6. Certified Memorandum and Articles of Association (Memart)
7. Completed corporate account opening form signed by the company’s designated signatories and the directors of the company.
8. Certified true copies of incorporation documents.
9. Tax Identification Number (TIN) for the company
10. Utility bill of business addresses such as the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), water bill, Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), etc.
11. 2 duly filled reference forms by corporate account holders.
12. Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering (SCUML) registration where applicable.
13. Special requirements such as business permit, residence permit, etc. for foreigner nationals.
Cost of opening a business bank account in Nigeria
Actually, there is no cost for opening a corporate business bank account in Nigeria. Nonetheless, it is important to note that for every business, a minimum amount of N10,000 must be in their account. So this might also be a requirement for opening the account in some cases too.
How To Open Your Business Bank Account
Step 1: Decide which bank account to open: The first and most important step you need to take is to decide which bank account would fit your business. Currently, there are more than 10 commercial banks in Nigeria and you have to choose between them. Do thorough research and make enquires on which of those banks works better.
Step 2: Submit the necessary requirements: Now you have to go to the bank. All the members of the business must not necessarily go to the bank if all the documents and requirements stated above are complete. The bank will ask for those documents and the company must provide them before the account will be opened.
That is all you have to do if you want to open a corporate business account. You can see that the steps here are not difficult. The crux is always on getting the required documents for opening the account.
Foreign Company Opening A Bank Account in Nigeria
The currently provides that the a business which is not duly registered cannot open a corporate business bank account in Nigeria. This makes it impossible to open an account for a foreign business in Nigeria except its subsidiary is registered in accordance with CEMA. The body responsible for doing this is the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). Below are the requirements for foreign businesses:
1. The particulars of a minimum of two (2) Directors will be required.
2. Complete details of the shareholders of the company.
3. A copy of their means of identification such as voter’s card, national ID, drivers’ license or international passport.
4. Particulars of the company secretary (one of the directors may also act as the Secretary of the company)
5. Name of the company.
6. The registered address of the company.
7. The share capital and shareholding formula among shareholders will be required.
8. It should be noted that the directors listed can also hold the capacity of shareholders in the company if desired.
Also see: How to apply for divorce in Nigeria
So far, i have discussed and explained how to open a business bank account in Nigeria and the requirements for doing so. I hope this was insightful? Well, like I said at the beginning of this work, this is just the basics of what you should know. It is imperative to do more research before running to the bank to open an account for you business.