The 10 Best EMI’s in EU

EMI’s (Electronic Money Institutions) are becoming increasingly popular due to their wide range of options for personal and corporate e-finance solutions. They offer innovative, modern solutions for start-up businesses that need a more catered experience for the digital realm, with sleeker technologies that are usually more user-friendly and cutting edge, as compared to traditional banks. Their up-to-date technological infrastructures add a level of increased security against risk and support anti-money laundering rules. Some of their benefits include remote services, mobile apps, and streamlined processes. With so many options on the market, it can be difficult to sift through their offerings and find the one that is right for your business. We have collected a list of the 10 best EMI’s in Europe to help get you started.

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Founded in 2011 and based in Finland, Holvi provides business solutions for freelancers and entrepreneurs. 

The Pros

Clear pricing available on their website with multiple packages for the different needs of small businesses and solo entrepreneurs. Manage your account online or through their mobile app. Ability to create and send invoices. Simple process to upload receipts, categorise transactions and add VAT. Accounts come with a free business Mastercard. SEPA transfers or SumUp available. Software available to help you easily set up your online store.

The Cons

Not the best option for larger businesses. Online reviews are mostly positive, but some refer to bugs with the app on iOS.

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Headquartered in France, Anytime launched in 2014 aimed at younger people. By the end of 2015, it grew to include competitive business options with an emphasis on client feedback.

The Pros

Clear pricing information and multiple packages to fit a variety of needs. No limits on the number of Mastercards that you can have with them. Free international transactions. Offers cheque cashing. Direct debit, employee payroll and bill pay available. Quotes and invoice editing. Manage your account online or through their mobile app. Generally positive reviews online about service and customer assistance. API available to integrate into other platforms.

The Cons

Some reviews state that customer service is available only in French and that funds are sometimes withheld.

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ImaginBank launched as Spain’s first mobile-only bank targeted at millennials and is in association with CaixaBank.

The Pros

No monthly maintenance fees. Free Visa debit card. Works with Apple Pay. Account management with their app. Free money withdrawals from CaixaBank ATMs.

The Cons

Pricing information isn’t available on their website. You need to go to a CaixaBank ATM to select your PIN for the debit card. No online account management options. May not be the best option for businesses. 

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Born from the desire to provide an inclusive banking experience, Monese launched in 2015 as the first 100% mobile current account in the UK.

The Pros

Pricing information is available on their website. You can easily manage your account with their mobile app. Provides a free Mastercard with contactless pay. Works with Apple Pay and there is no limit on contactless pay when you use your smartphone. Accessible in 10 languages. Several cash deposits locations. International transfers at a competitive fee.

The Cons

Requires photo and image of photo ID for identification verification, but this is typical. Apple Pay features currently only available in France and the UK.

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Launched in July 2015, Revolut states that they service over 7 million customers worldwide with over 350 million transactions.

The Pros

Clearing pricing information available on their website. Ability to manage your account online and with their mobile app. Built-in budgeting that can be categorised. They can round up monetary amounts on purchases to deposit into a savings account for you. Real-time notifications. Interbank exchange rate for over 150 currencies. Up to €300 per month on ATM withdrawals without a fee. Can set up recurring payments.

The Cons

Flat mark-up on exchanges on weekends and for certain currencies. 2% fee on ATM withdrawals above €300 per month.

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Mistertango is a licensed electronic money institute based out of Lithuania and supervised by Central Bank.

The Pros

Clear pricing information available on their website. No monthly fees. Free MasterCard for shopping online or in stores. ATM withdrawals are free under €200 per month. Offers SEPA & SWIFT money transfers. Ability to create limitless virtual IBANs for each customer or payment. Access your account online or through their mobile app. Supports Bitcoin with the potential for supporting more cryptocurrencies in the future.

The Cons

There are some negative reviews online about account freezes, but a rep from the company has reached out to each of those reviewers to try to help them.

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N26 was founded in 2013 and is a fully licensed mobile bank headquartered in Berlin, providing services to over 26 countries. They boast that they rank among the top ten most valuable FinTech companies worldwide.

The Pros

Clear pricing information available on their website. Account management available through their online platform and mobile app. Their app allows you to create subcategories for money management. Push notifications give you real-time updates on your account. Free worldwide ATM withdrawals. Accounts specifically for freelancers and self-employed people give cash-back on purchases. Travel insurance and mobile theft coverage are also available.

The Cons

You have to upload a picture of your face and a photo ID for identification verification, which isn’t unusual.

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LeuPay rebranded to LeoPay in 2018. They offer services in over 40 countries, including Europe, North America, South America, and Africa.

The Pros

Free IBAN accounts in over 10 currencies. Offers both online and mobile app dashboard for convenient account management. Free peer-to-peer transfers and instant notifications about account activity. Direct debit options for 50p per transaction. The first two physical Visa cards are free with no issuing or monthly fees. No charges for international payments and ATM withdrawals are available worldwide. Contactless payment is supported.

The Cons

They require a five-minute video call with a representative for ID verification. Negative reviews online that refer to funds being withheld, as well as accounts being closed down.

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Paysera has been offering online money solutions since 2012 and their money institution license was issued by the Bank of Lithuania. They state that their vision is a world where electronic payments have no boundaries, are simple, fast and accessible to anyone and anywhere.

The Pros

Free account that can be managed online and through their mobile app. A contactless Visa debit card is available. A comprehensive breakdown of prices is available on their website. Instant transfers through SEPA Instant. Global transfers and currency exchange. Can import payment templates from other banks. They have generally positive reviews online.

The Cons

There are some restrictions to specific countries where payments and transfers can occur, but those are clearly laid out with reasoning on their website.

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Deutsche Handelsbank

Deutsche Handelsbank switched from online banking to electronic banking in November 2019 after the second EU Payment Directive was implemented.

The Pros

They have their own bank license. They also offer high risk solutions to businesses. They provide a deposit guarantee of up to €100,000. They also offer loan services for businesses.

The Cons

Lack of information on their website, including prices and detailed information about services. They do not seem to have a mobile app available at this time.

Provider of the Month

Why Holvi

Founded in 2011 and based in Helsinki, Finland, Holvi is the world’s premier digital banking service for freelancers and entrepreneurs. Combining powerful money management tools with an easy-to-use business account, Holvi offers an innovative banking experience that actually helps you run your business.

See Our Full Review

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