World First 14 Dec 2017 02:51pm

It's about time international banking and accounting moved into the 21st century

We are firmly in the digital age. Technological developments have influenced every aspect of our personal and working lives. It is now typical for a business to be completely digital where important decisions are made over email exchanges, buyers meet sellers online and online software or processes allow us to do our job effectively

Caption: World Account is a payments platform designed to reduce the hassle and costs of moving money internationally

Over the last decade, financial services has slowly also opened itself to technological disruption. From contactless payments to blockchain, money is finally moving online. For small businesses, this has opened up a range of opportunities from digital software reducing the expense of business accounting to new online platforms that allow entrepreneurs to seek funding from a wider pool of investors. 

The fintech revolution is well under way and is one that looks to make the task of business finance and accounting simpler, easier, cheaper and more accessible to companies without the resource of a large finance department.

This has also brought with it a change in our mind-set. Business owners now rightly expect financial services to be more flexible, bespoke to them and their business needs and work outside the traditional remits of a high street bank. Recent research by Xero, the online accounting software firm, revealed that small businesses are increasingly looking for on demand accounting and financial services with less than half (42%) of small businesses expecting to talk face to face with finance professionals in the future.

However with all this change, some aspects of financial services has failed to keep up with the process of moving money internationally remaining antiquated and a pain point for many global minded small businesses.

Talk to any entrepreneur who has tried to open a local bank account overseas and the story is much the same; it’s at best slow and frustrating and at its worst, impossible. The latter is especially true in the US where you will often be required to have a physical presence in the country first, which itself can be problematic without a bank account.

Of course you could ask your business bank to open a euro or US dollar account for you, but more than likely the account will still be based here in the UK and there may be a charge for your customers to pay into it (and possibly for you to pay out too). It’s a foreign currency account, yes, but it’s not local.

This is why we launched World Account, an international payments platform designed to reduce the hassle and costs of moving money internationally. With World Account, businesses can open multiple international currency accounts in pound sterling, euros, US dollars and Canadian dollars free of charge- all in a few simple steps. All these accounts can then be accessed and managed from one platform or through a brand new app using one single sign-on.

There are no hidden fees to run World Account or to send international payments or receive funds from overseas. Most importantly, businesses can have full control of their international payments in a simple to use platform making the process simple offering them an ‘on-demand’ financial service they can access when it works for their business.