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    The rapid growth of the financial services industry, also known as “FinTech”, over the last five years has produced a tremendous range of new institutions that offer advanced digital banking services for personal and business users without themselves being registered as banks. One of the most common forms of the new fintech services goes under the name of Electronic Money Institutions, or EMIs. Here we will try to help you understand exactly what are the differences between Electronic Money Institutions and banks that you are familiar with, and to identify the pros and cons of each.

     

    Banks

    A brief summary of the structure of banking is as follows.

    • Banks are licensed by a central authority in each country where they operate, and are subject to tight fiscal constraints and supervision. In general, banks have to be funded with a large capital base, normally set at a minimum of $10-$20 million (€5 million or up).
    • Banks can offer a wide range of services, such as checking accounts, overdrafts, mortgages, direct debit functionality, payment services, asset management, etc. and can issue their own debit and credit cards. As well, some banks are starting to provide some of the digital financial services that can be offered by EMIs.
    • Banks are required to report to the central authorities at least quarterly and have to keep a predetermined level of liquidity – the ratio of cash and short-term assets to liabilities. Generally, these obligations lead to banks adopting more conservative practices in conducting business, and in being more rigid in terms of services offered and inability to adapt their services to changes in the market. It is for these reasons that the explosion in the financial services sector has happened since businesses have been changing faster than the banks could accommodate.

     

    EMIs

    EMIs operate under a much more relaxed set of rules and supervision.

    • In general, an EMI can be registered with startup capital of less than half a million dollars (€350,000) and the reporting stipulations are less rigorous.
    • EMIs offer services of execution of money transactions, such as credit transfers and direct debits, money remittances, foreign exchange services, and can issue electronic money which is a form of cash stored on an electronic device.
    • EMI can also provide IBAN accounts, payment cards and e-wallets.

     

    Pros and Cons

    The main differences in favor of regular banks are:

    • Banks can lend money to customers, or allow accounts to go into debt. (EMIs work exclusively on funds that have already been deposited into accounts, and no lending is permitted.)
    • In Europe, bank accounts are guaranteed up to €100,000 so that in the event of bank failure, credit balances up to that amount will not be lost. (EMIs have no guarantee.)
    • Banks can offer a wider range of services so that a commercial bank can be a “one-stop shop” for all of a customer’s financial needs. (EMIs are more limited in the services they are allowed to provide.)

     

    The differences where EMIs score points are:

    • EMIs are designed and built for the digital era to make full use of the internet. Most conventional banks were established in the pre-digital age, and will have to spend vast amounts of money and resources just to catch up, without ever being likely to get ahead in terms of range and depth of digital services.
    • EMIs offer the possibilities that are suitable right now. Electronic Money Institutions don’t spend millions on “bricks-and-mortar” facilities and local offices, which is a function needed for conventional banks to achieve market penetration but instead can use their resources to acquire new business by spending their money where it will achieve the highest value.
    • EMIs are flexible in approach to innovation as well as in adaptability, whereas conventional banks are fenced-in by legislation and regulations. EMIs adopt the widest possible spread of options and provide their customers with choices. When it comes to the movement of money, whereas banks work with limited services for card payments and wire transfers, EMIs can have many different payment options that may be better for their clients. read more about e money account
    • An E-money license vs a banking license is much cheaper, allowing more competition between the operators, which means better services at lower costs for the end customer. Both can be great options if you are looking to open an online gaming company.
    • So, to summarize the differences between Electronic Money Institutions and banks, conventional banks can offer degrees of security and a broader band of service that EMIs cannot at this stage match, but they are relatively inflexible and conservative in terms of accepting customers and slow to introduce modern services. EMIs, on the other hand, are offering up-to-date and flexible products that are closely following needs in the business world, and are less restricted by regulations.

     

    Electronic Money Institution vs. Bank

    An electronic money institution (EMI) is a financial institution that is authorized to issue electronic money (e-money), which is a type of electronic payment system that allows individuals and businesses to make financial transactions electronically. E-money is stored in an electronic wallet or on a prepaid card and can be used to make purchases online or in person at merchants that accept e-money. EMI’s are regulated by the financial authorities in the countries in which they operate, and they are typically required to hold a certain amount of capital in reserve in order to ensure the stability of the e-money system.

    Banks, on the other hand, are traditional financial institutions that offer a wide range of financial products and services, including checking and savings accounts, loans, credit cards, and investment products. Banks are typically regulated by national or federal authorities and are required to meet certain capital requirements in order to ensure their stability. In addition to issuing traditional currency, some banks also offer electronic payment services, such as online banking and mobile payments, which are similar to those offered by EMIs.

     

    What are the requirements to open EMI bank account?

    Depending on the institution and nation you are in, certain conditions must be met in order to obtain an EMI (Electronic Money Institution) bank account. To open the account, you may generally be required to present some type of government-issued identification, such as a driver’s license or passport, as well as verification of your address, such as a utility bill. Depending on the laws of the country, some EMIs can also need more information or verification. It is best to inquire about the requirements of the particular EMI you are interested in.

    1. When you register an account with an EMI (Electronic Money Institution), the EMI might need specific paperwork or information for a number of reasons:
    2. KYC (Know Your Customer) rules: In order to abide by anti-money laundering (AML) and combating the financing of terrorism (CFT) regulations, EMIs must confirm the identity of their clients.
    3. Compliance: EMIs must make sure they are functioning within the legal parameters set forth by the nation in which they are doing business.
    4. Risk management: EMIs can more accurately identify and manage the risk related to their consumers by gathering and validating specific information.
    5. To ensure that the account will be active and maintain the minimum level required by regulatory authorities, some EMIs may require a minimum deposit before opening an account.
    6. Proof of address: EMIs may need proof of address to confirm that you reside in the nation you claim to do so as well as to guarantee that the mail will be sent to the address you have provided.

    It’s crucial to note that these specifications could change based on the particular EMI and the nation in which you reside, therefore it’s better to ask the EMI for a list of their particular specifications.

     

    What is an electronic money institution (EMI)?

    An electronic money institution is a type of financial institution that issues electronic money, also known as e-money. E-money is a digital representation of value that is issued and accepted by EMI’s and can be used to make payments for goods and services. EMI’s may offer a range of financial products and services, including the issuance of e-money and the operation of electronic payment systems.

    In order to operate as an EMI, an organization must be authorized by a national regulator, such as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the United Kingdom or the European Central Bank (ECB) in the European Union. EMI’s are subject to specific regulations and requirements designed to ensure the safety and stability of the electronic payment system and protect consumers.

    EMI’s may offer a variety of bank accounts for customers, including checking accounts, savings accounts, and prepaid card accounts. These accounts may be used to store and manage e-money, make payments and transfers, and manage financial transactions. EMI’s may also offer additional financial products and services, such as foreign exchange services, mobile banking, and online banking.

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