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  1. #1
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    Default Companies asking for bank information

    This isn’t just a US thing but I have some potential customers (they usually end up becoming customers) asking for my bank details. This is over and above what I regard as standard information which is on my invoice when sent. I require payment by bank transfer.

    What I find interesting is that to most customers, for standard stock items, payment is after receipt so if anyone should be asking it should be me asking about their bank and not them me. For non stock special items then, unless it is a regular customer, I prefer payment in advance.

    My question is – why do companies require my bank information when it isn’t me paying them plus not requiring payment until after receipt?

    I could understand it if what I was supplying involved large amounts and took time as they’d want to make sure there were no problems while waiting. However in my case it is usually only for a few thousand and even for non stock items manufacturing time is rarely over 3 weeks.

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    Had that happen once, but it was with a long standing international company. ( Which was going down hill. ) They had a new plant manager at the local plant who was an asshole. We were already having a hard time getting paid by them. I sent him a not so polite email back ( which I had cleared with the boss lady. ) We never got anymore work from them which was o.k. We still got work from their Mexico plants which payed on time every time.

    Point being some people are just dicks. Does Denmark have an equivalent to our Better Business Bureau? If so and you are listed, refer them to it.

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    what bank details are they asking for exactly apart from SWIFT/IBAN? Bank address? that can be googled from the SWIFT code... there is basically nothing more they might need if they truly want to just send the money over

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    Better ask your customer why they want that information Not here on PM
    Perhaps they want to put you in their account system and want all relevant information in there in one go

    Peter

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    They're your potential customers, ask them. If we are to guess, tell as what they're asking for - bank, branch, account #, swift code, those not exactly state secret stuff, it might be as simple as some clerk needs the fields filled in to set you up as a vendor.

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    I'll try and answer the questions/points raised in this post.

    I'll start with that it has been years since I was in my bank (the largest in Denmark and has hundreds of branches) and EVERYTHING here is done by the internet. Checks became obsolete as per January 1st this year. To work here you need a bank account as you never receive cash directly.

    When they ask it is for much more than "just":

    Bank :
    Reg. No. :
    Account no. :
    VAT No./CVR
    IBAN no.: DK
    SWIFT adr.:

    All of the above are on my invoice and this information gets sent when requested before any invoice is sent.

    The ones (technical employees) that want to buy my products all apologize and say it is their financial department that demands the information. I've asked why on each occasion but as yet never been given a reason. "That's just the way things are" is as close as I can get.

    Again, even for non stock items I rarely have a delivery time longer than 3 weeks and usually (it depends on what is ordered) state that payment is after receipt. What do they have to lose? Most of my orders are for a few thousand $s at a time.

    Just for the record I'm in the fortunate situation (?) that I can and do say "No thanks" to an order if I feel it's more trouble than it's worth. I had one customer that kept asking questions and after about 20 emails with one question after another that became a "Find another supplier".

    It isn't just US companies but it's them that ask most questions and want the most information. Again it is just a few but they are a PITA and time consuming.
    I had one that asked how much I sold for last year and how much I had in my bank. No, they were not from Nigeria

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    Our vendors ask us for that information, other way around from you. If we refuse they just say fine you will have to pay before we ship product. I don’t know why a customer would need this info. Not that it helps but we do banking like it’s the 1800s. We go to the bank at least once a week, sometimes once a day.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by adh2000 View Post
    I don’t know why a customer would need this info.
    So they can pay you.

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    so 'what' information is it they are asking for?

    Color of the building?
    Name of best looking teller?
    Average assets on account?

    You are a bit unclear

    edit
    >>>I had one that asked how much I sold for last year and how much I had in my bank<<<

    saw this, appropriate answer is:

    I am not applying for credit from your company, please direct me to your immediate supervisor so I may file a complaint

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    Is it possible that their financial institution is asking (indirectly through them to you) for information relating to anti-money laundering and compliance with Patriot Act provisions of banking regulations? The last 10 years have seen a proliferation of unusually onerous regulations on financial institutions aimed at 'Know Your Customer", where 'your customer' can drive several levels down the rabbit hole into making sure their financial institution isn't involved in abetting terrorism and financial crimes.

    Not defending it...just a possible explanation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crazygoat View Post
    Had that happen once, but it was with a long standing international company. ( Which was going down hill. ) They had a new plant manager at the local plant who was an asshole. We were already having a hard time getting paid by them. I sent him a not so polite email back ( which I had cleared with the boss lady. ) We never got anymore work from them which was o.k. We still got work from their Mexico plants which payed on time every time.

    Point being some people are just dicks. Does Denmark have an equivalent to our Better Business Bureau? If so and you are listed, refer them to it.
    Why do people here and on other forums mention the BBB like they wield some kind of power? They don't have any authority and aren't a government agency. They are a joke and a border line fraud. A good example they have Viasat which is a satellite internet provider rated as an A+ while they average one out of 5 stars for customer reviews on the BBB and everywhere else a Viasat satisfied customer is a rarity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    I had one that asked how much I sold for last year and how much I had in my bank. No, they were not from Nigeria
    are you sure that wasn't one of your far eastern suppliers in disguise, thinking whether they need to expand their product range with customized measuring devices not just plain calipers?


    Quote Originally Posted by Dumpster_diving View Post
    Is it possible that their financial institution is asking (indirectly through them to you) for information relating to anti-money laundering and compliance with Patriot Act provisions of banking regulations? The last 10 years have seen a proliferation of unusually onerous regulations on financial institutions aimed at 'Know Your Customer", where 'your customer' can drive several levels down the rabbit hole into making sure their financial institution isn't involved in abetting terrorism and financial crimes.

    Not defending it...just a possible explanation.
    I don't think it has gotten as far as that, it would be similar to assuming everyone is guilty and then you need to prove that you're not... banks need to know their clients AFAIK, not clients of their clients, if something is suspicious with their client, they then may talk to the other bank about their customer and/or report it to the appropriate agencies, couple years ago as far as I remember the new bank account registration form did ask about potential customers, but that is as far as it went, haven't noticed any new requests from the bank to gather more data, at least that is how it works here, not that we're the prime example of banking industry, if there even is such a thing any more

    such info would also fall under protection of personal information act (or whatever that law is called here in EU), which caused all the cookie warning messages and acceptance popups on web pages etc a while back

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dumpster_diving View Post
    Is it possible that their financial institution is asking (indirectly through them to you) for information relating to anti-money laundering and compliance with Patriot Act provisions of banking regulations? The last 10 years have seen a proliferation of unusually onerous regulations on financial institutions aimed at 'Know Your Customer", where 'your customer' can drive several levels down the rabbit hole into making sure their financial institution isn't involved in abetting terrorism and financial crimes.

    Not defending it...just a possible explanation.
    A reasonable explanation but I'm no where near "money laundering" sums.

    That explanation has crossed my mind but they are buying from me and not vice versa.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dualkit View Post
    Why do people here and on other forums mention the BBB like they wield some kind of power? They don't have any authority and aren't a government agency. They are a joke and a border line fraud. A good example they have Viasat which is a satellite internet provider rated as an A+ while they average one out of 5 stars for customer reviews on the BBB and everywhere else a Viasat satisfied customer is a rarity.

    The BBB is Yelp for old people. Don't believe me? Look it up in the Yellow Pages.

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    It could be that the buyer wants to make sure that in the case of faulty product, that they have recourse.

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by TDegenhart View Post
    It could be that the buyer wants to make sure that in the case of faulty product, that they have recourse.

    Tom
    And bank information is clearly not their avenue of recourse.

    It's just out of line

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mcgyver View Post
    They're your potential customers, ask them. If we are to guess, tell as what they're asking for - bank, branch, account #, swift code, those not exactly state secret stuff, it might be as simple as some clerk needs the fields filled in to set you up as a vendor.
    That's what you need to do wire transfer ... plus account name.

    But yeah, I can imagine people being scaredy-cats over fatca and the "patriot" act. If you don't need the business, I'd start a reaction : "Sorry. You get the stock info and no more, it's none of your business. Thank you for your time."

    If enough people tell these places to buzz off, maybe they will wake up.

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    Maybe an attempt at Phishing? Phishing - Wikipedia

    Paul

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul39 View Post
    Maybe an attempt at Phishing? Phishing - Wikipedia

    Paul
    No. These are legitimate companies and have eventually bought from me. The engineer at the latest one wants to buy but can't get the OK from his financial department as I haven't answered all their questions. He now says he going to get a company he knows to buy from me and then he'll buy from them.

    I've written that if he does that then it'll be payment in advance.

    I fully understand that some companies (aerospace etc.) have procedures that have to be followed and that's OK. A few seem though, for no apparent reason, to take things to excess.

    Ending on a bright note I've never had a customer that didn't pay

    I'm an approved supplier to GE - for whatever that's worth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post

    I'm an approved supplier to GE - for whatever that's worth.

    So am I, and it aint worth much.

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