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What kind of bank account should a start-up open?

Vanessa Kruze Kruze Consulting

Vanessa Kruze

CEO and Founder of Kruze Consulting

As a CPA who works exclusively with funded startups, I see our founders either loving or struggling with their bank. Since cash is the life blood of an early-stage company, the banking relationship actually matters. In fact, only a few banks “get” the startup market - most banks are used to working with cashflow positive small businesses, not seed or venture funded companies who are going to burn cash for the foreseeable future.

Here are the best banks for startups:

  • Silicon Valley Bank
  • First Republic

Recently there are a few new, tech-enabled (and VC backed) banks that have come onto the scene. For a fuller description of these banks, visit our best banks for startups article. We’ve also got some pretty solid opinions on how to make your company the most efficient, and how to make your startup’s accounting simple and clean (so you can focus on growing the company and not debits and credits!) We’ve actually broken down the top credit cards for funded companies here. And below are some other systems that we strongly recommend.

  • Credit Card for Company Expenses = Brex
  • Expense Software = Expensify
  • Bill Payments (AP) = Bill.com
  • Payment Processor = Stripe

An interesting development that we are starting to see is the collision of corporate card vendors and banks. In fact, there are now a handful of players like Rho, Brex and Ramp that are all starting to combine cards, expense management and cash management (aka something like a checking account). The appeal to these, other than the points and zero liability for the founder, is a better online UX for the founder to manage their company’s burn and cash. However, the traditional players like SVB and First Republic still have a strong lead when it comes to customer service, intro’s to possible VC investors and debt products. 

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