The Co-operative Bank was set up as an ethical bank in Manchester in 1872. The bank avoids investments in ‘unethical’ businesses, including the arms trade, fossil fuels, and animal testing. There are just 68 branches in the UK. Business customers can access a Co-operative current account, business finance, and savings products.
Cooperative Bank Business Banking Services
The Co-operative Bank offers five current accounts, depending on the business’ needs. The standard Business Directplus account gives customers 30 months’ free everyday banking. There are also accounts available for Federation of Small Businesses members, charities, and businesses with a high cash turnover. Accounts cost a minimum of £5 per month.
The Co-operative only offers an instant access savings account, which you can open with a minimum of £1. Interest rates are 0.50% AER variable and calculated daily. Interest rates can go up or down, but the Co-operative will contact you 2 months in advance of them decreasing to let you know.
Businesses can apply for a secured or unsecured overdraft of up to £250,000. Interest rates are variable and calculated using the Bank of England Base Rate. Arranged overdrafts are currently charged at 6.97% representative EAR variable. There’s also a 1.5% overdraft arrangement fee (£50 minimum).
Business finance and loans
Borrow between £25,020 and £250,000, and repay over 1-15 years. Interest varies and is charged monthly. Co-operative business customers can also apply for a Charge Card with an interest-free period of up to 48 days, with a monthly fee of £2 per card.
Reviews and ratings
Trustpilot reviews are mixed. Some Co-op Bank customers are pleased with how easy it is to manage their account, but the majority are unhappy with online banking glitches, and slow payments and transfers.
Smart Money People reviewers are complimentary of the Co-operative Bank as a whole, but there are just 3 public reviews for the business current account. Two of those reviewers are happy with the customer service they received.
There are no public reviews on Reviews.co.uk.
The Co-operative Bank ranked 11th in a list of the 14 largest business current account providers for overall service quality in an independent survey.
In the same list of 14 business current account providers, the Co-operative Bank also ranked 13th for online and mobile banking services, 13th for relationship/account management, and 12th for service in branches.
Which? rate the Co-operative Bank 4/5 for communication, customer service, applications, transparency of charges, online banking, and complaints handling. The Co-op also scored 3/5 for service in-branch and value for money.
- Excellent free banking period for new customers.
- Good choice of current accounts.
- High rating on Which?
- Lack of choice when it comes to savings accounts.
- Some critical reviews on Trustpilot.
- Poor rankings in independent service quality survey.