Whether you are an entrepreneur or an individual, you will need to open a Spanish bank account when you arrive in Spain. To do so, all you will need to do is go to the bank of your choice with your ID and your NIE. So, which banks are in Spain? Where should you go to open your first account?
The profile of Spanish banks has changed dramatically in the last twenty years: they are now internationalised. The entry into Europe, increased competition and driven by technological innovation have all enabled the development of new strategies for company management.
Following the crisis of recent years, Spanish banks have gained a bad reputation that is sometimes unjustified. Some Spanish banks received EU aid of 41.3million€ in 2012 which allowed them to recover while other were forced to close. The banking system is now much stronger.
The most popular Spanish banks are BBVA, La Caixa, Santander and Banco Sabadell. BBVA, La Caixa and Santander are the most popular for individual banking purposes. Banco Sabadell however is the 4th largest bank in Spain and focuses on professionals by providing tailored services. Its branches cover almost the whole of Spain. Finally, be aware that many savings banks are also present throughout the country too. You are really spoiled for choice as to where to open an account and submit your credit card application.
Foreign entrepreneurs are often surprised by the reception of Spanish bankers because their attitude is generally very positive when facing the creation of a company. A request for funding represents the first source of credit for small and medium sized enterprises. Banks may agree to finance up to 75% of initial costs for starting the business. However, when it comes to large projects requiring long-term loans, the bank's participation is generally limited to the amount of capital provided by the business creator himself. Banks often require a personal guarantee from the project leader, especially if he does not have personal funds.
Most banks offer online payment solutions that will allow you to charge people easily online and with the highest level of security. This type of service is essential if you want to develop your online business.