Silicon Valley Bank, a digital bank founded in 1983 that catered to startups and scale-ups, was shut down by the government on Friday, March 10, 2013, after regulators discovered “inadequate liquidity and insolvency” in place. While SVB customers will be able to access their insured deposits through the FDIC, the future of this bank is unclear.
If you’re looking for a top-notch business bank account that caters to growing businesses, look to these top alternatives offering free transactions, low fees and useful tools that can help you to keep track of expenses, stay on top of payroll and simplify tax obligations as you scale your business.
What Silicon Valley Bank’s shutdown means for customers
The FDIC issued a press release on March 12, 2023, announcing that it had immediately transferred all insured deposits to the newly created Deposit Interest National Bank of Santa Clarita (DINB). The FDIC assured depositers full access to their insured deposits by Monday, March 13, 2023.
For depositers whose assets total more than the $250,000 covered by the FDIC’s standard insurance, the FDIC has announced it will pay “an advance dividend within the next week” with possible “future dividend payments” as the government sells off SVB’s assets.
The FDIC advises customers whose accounts total more than $250,000 to call 866-799-0959 for more information.
Disclosure: Finder banked with SVB before its closure.
12 Silicon Valley Bank alternatives for small businesses
- Novo Business
- Brex Cash account
- Bluevine Business Checking
- Live Oak Bank Small Business Checking Account
- Chase Business Complete Checking
- Axos Bank Basic Business Checking
- NorthOne Business Banking
- Axos Bank Business Interest Checking
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How to compare business bank accounts
If your business was affected by the government’s seizure of Silicon Valley Bank, you’re likely focused on protecting your assets. Who you bank with plays a critical role in the daily operations of your business.
When you’re ready to transfer your money to another bank, look for low fees, competitive interest rates and features designed to protect your business and simplify how you manage your money:
- Fees. Look for business accounts with low or minimal fees that are easily waived by meeting deposit, balance or transaction requirements. Confirm that overdraft and other penalty fees are reasonable.
- Interest rates. Increase your profitability and give inflation a run for its money with a bank that offers competitive interest rates on savings, checking and CDs.
- Account minimums. Make sure minimum balance or opening deposit requirements are low and align with your cash flow.
- Online banking. Most banks that cater to startups offer robust digital banking services that include online account management, bill pay and mobile banking on the go.
- ATM access. Weight ATM availability for your business to access fee-free or low-cost cash withdrawals.
- Merchant services. If your business accepts credit card payments, consider a bank that offers payment processing with fees that fit your transaction volume.
- Software integration. Most business bank accounts offer integrations for accounting, payroll and taxes. For example, Bluevine syncs with popular business tools like QuickBooks, Stripe and PayPal.
- Access to credit. A relationship with a business designed to grow with you will offer low-cost business loans or lines of credit at competitive rates and terms.
- Fraud protection. Fraud protection and account monitoring helps you spot suspicious account activity, so that you can report it to your bank before you’re held liable.
- Customer support. The best banks for startups and small businesses offer access to a dedicated business banking representative, live chat and quality customer service as you scale.
- FDIC insurance. As a rule of thumb, confirm that any digital or online bank is backed by the FDIC, which protects balances of up to $250,000.
Are online and digital business banks safe?
Yes. Like brick-and-mortar banks, online and digital banks are insured by the FDIC for up to $250,000, which protects you and your money in the unlikely event of a bank failure.
Online banks are built on traditional banking infrastructure, so they look and feel a lot like traditional accounts, helping the best online and digital banks to offer fewer fees and higher interest rates than your corner branch.
Digital banks are built on brand-new infrastructure, and often have more tech-forward features, like early direct deposits and the ability to budget and save for specific goals directly in the mobile app.
Featured picks for alternatives to Silicon Valley Bank
Best for accountants and bookkeepers
- $0 monthly fees
- $0 minimum balance
- ATM fees refunded
- Invoicing & budgeting
- FDIC insured
- $0 fees and minimum balances
- Up to 20 individual checking accounts
- QuickBooks Online and Xero integrations
- FDIC insured
- Zero fees
- Flexible saving options
- No cap on transactions
- FDIC and SIPC insured