How to open a HSBC Business Account

The ins and outs of opening an account in Hong Kong

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    The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited, known as HSBC, is one of the oldest banks in Asia opening its doors in 1865. Today they are one of the largest banks in the world.

    On their website, HSBC claims a HSBC business account opening will take 3 working days. The fine print says this is subject to business eligibility, providing the required documents, and other terms and conditions.

    So, what's the reality? Does it really take only 3 days before your business can start business internet banking, or does it take longer?

    To make the opening an account process with HSBC easier for you to navigate, we take a closer look.

    What is a HSBC Business Account?

    A HSBC business account is marketed as a "Business Integrated account".

    The Business Integrated account combines savings, current deposit, and time deposit accounts in HK Dollar, Renminbi, and a range of foreign currencies under one single account number.

    An investment account can also be combined under the Business Integrated account to help clients manage their investments.

    There are three types of Business Integrated Accounts:

    • HSBC Sprint Account: offering basic services for startups
    • HSBC Business Direct: offering slightly more services for growing SMEs
    • BusinessVantage: offering more advanced services for established SMEs.

    Each account comes with different features and pricing to support your business needs, including access to business internet banking. 

    Every business account supports receiving and paying with 12 currencies: AUD, CAD, EUR, JPY, NZD, GBP, RMB, SGD, CHF, THB, USD, and HKD. 

    You can transact and invest 24/7 via the HSBC internet banking portal or the HSBC mobile banking app.

    You can also use new collection and payment methods in your business account, such as QR codes and digital wallets, to better manage your business’ finances.

    Check with the HSBC HK website for insights and content to support your decision-making process.

    How to apply for a HSBC Business Account?

    You can apply for an account in one of the following ways:

    • Apply online
    • Download the HSBC HK Business Express mobile app and apply through it.
      While visiting a HSBC store in person is still an option, the HSBC mobile app can accept and scan documents from your device or local files directly to the bank
    • Call the dedicated hotline (852) 2233 3000 for an appointment.

    After the application is made, HSBC will contact you to schedule an appointment at an HSBC Business Center.

    Eligibility to open a Business Account

    Your company must be incorporated in Hong Kong to open a Business Integrated account. Companies can be incorporated or registered in the following ways:

    • Sole Proprietorship
    • Limited company
    • General partnership

    Companies incorporated outside of Hong Kong may also apply if they are registered as one of the above, however additional documents and information will be required.

    Requirements to open a business account

    First, you will need to fill out an application form. It is a little weighty at 12 pages long.

    Once your form is approved, you will be invited to schedule an appointment at an HSBC Business Center.

    For your appointment, you will need to bring along all required documents. Documents required vary for different business types.

    You may also have to bring shareholders of your business and the signatory to the business account to the meeting. Check with HSBC beforehand. 

    To activate your account, you need to make an initial deposit of HKD10,000. There could be changes to terms and conditions, so stay up to date and find products, insights, and other information on the HSBC HK website.

    Documents Needed

    As mentioned, the documents that you need when applying for one of HSBC’s business products vary according to the structure of your business. You can find out more here

    We have made it easier for you to find the answer with these quick overviews.

    For a sole proprietorship established in HK

    1. Business registration certificate
    2. Government-issued ID
    3. Proof of residence
    4. HSBC declaration form or IRS W form
    5. CRS self-certification form
    6. Proof of business
    7. Product or service information
    8. Latest auditor’s report or bank statement
    9. Proof of source of funds
    10. Proof of source of applicant's source of wealth
    11. Notice of participation issued by MPF trustee
    12. Relevant employment letter/employee certificate/ license

    Some additional documents may be required depending on the type of business account you choose.

    It is worth highlighting, all documents must be in English or Chinese. Otherwise, the applicant must provide an English translation.

    For help, you can contact HSBC’s support and resources center.

    For a limited company or general partnership established in HK

    1. Business registration certificate
    2. A signatory list recording the full names, ID type, and number of the account signatories
    3. Government-issued ID for all partners
    4. Proof of residence of all partners
    5. HSBC declaration form or IRS W form
    6. CRS self-certification form
    7. Proof of business
    8. Product or service information
    9. Latest auditor’s report or bank statement
    10. Proof of source of funds
    11. Proof of source of each of the applicant's source of wealth
    12. Notice of participation issued by MPF trustee
    13. Relevant employment letter/employee certificate/ license

    Again, all documents must be in English or Chinese. Stay up to date with the latest information on the HSBC HK website.

    What to do if your application is declined

    It is possible your application for a business account with HSBC might be declined.

    This may be due to a problem with the documents you submitted or due to the nature of your business.

    In such a scenario, you can email the bank to ask them to reconsider your application.

    When you send an email, it is essential that you provide the following information:

    1. The name of your company
    2. Your company's business registration certificate number or the certificate of incorporation number
    3. The date you first met the bank's officials to submit your application at the branch
    4. The name of the branch where you met the bank
    5. Any other information you think may be useful to support the account opening application

    If you are operating outside of HK in another country where HSBC offers business accounts, one way of increasing your chances of being approved in HK is to open an HSBC business account in your country. Operate that account for at least six months, and then apply for an account in HK. In your HK application include your HSBC bank account details in the documents you submit.

    For other important updates please visit the HSBC HK website.

    Are there easier alternatives?

    It is no lie that as a small business, opening an HSBC account is quite a large task with many hoops to jump through.

    Have you considered a payment provider that is not a bank?

    Fintechs, like Statrys, offer the ability to make payments across borders cheaper than banks. They also offer quicker and easier application processes. 

    Open an account with Statrys today and access a multi-currency account, payment cards, and bank-beating foreign exchange rates.

    For our latest service information, conditions and other important details, visit our Products page.

    For recent and important updates, please visit the HSBC HK website

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