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FINANCIAL SERVICES | Staff Reporter, Singapore

OCBC rolls out digital account opening service for MNCs

The time taken to set up an account will be cut 75% from months to weeks.

OCBC will launch a digital account opening service in what it claims to be a first in Singapore to simplify account openings for multi-national companies (MNCs) and other large corporate customers, an announcement revealed.

With the service, the time taken to set-up an account will be shortened from months to weeks by as much as 75% in some cases, OCBC revealed. In addition, the number of data fields has also been reduced from more than 200 to less than 50.

These are made possible by two key features of the service which comprise of digital connectivity and dynamic advisory, the announcement stated. With digital connectivity, information related to Singapore operations of large corporates are auto-populated from the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority’s (ACRA) business registry database via a service provider.

“Where the same information is required in multiple sections, the entry made in the first instance is auto-populated subsequently,” OCBC highlighted.

Dynamic advisory is given to applications on the specific documents needed to be submitted based on the company’s profile to complete the applications, OCBC explained. These documents include articles of association, board resolutions and certificates of incumbency.

“We want to transform digitally the way MNCs and large corporates engage with banks, a customer segment which is far more complex than others,” OCBC head of global corporate banking Elaine Lam said in a statement. “The roll out of this digital account opening service is part of an ambitious plan to create new digital touch points and pioneer new solutions to enhance their experience.”

Unlike retail and small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) customers, setting up an account for MNCs and large corporates is far more tedious and can take months complete, the bank highlighted. As part of the process, these large organisations are typically required by banks to fill in a physical application form that could be as long as 40 pages.

“This is due to the complexity of these companies where cross-jurisdictional structures and multiple levels of ownership are not uncommon,” OCBC said in a statement. “Some could have operations in 20 to 30 countries and account opening could require upwards of 15 authorised signatories.” 

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