There are over half a million English speakers living in Israel, tens of thousands of them are Israeli citizens who also hold US citizenship or have additional tax residency and therefore cannot receive full digital banking services.

The First Digital Bank aims to change this, by offering Israeli citizens, who also hold additional tax residency or US citizenship, to open a bank account (individual or joint account) without having to travel to a branch to receive limits. credit and full services in English.

Currently, the banking system does not allow Israeli citizens who also hold US citizenship or foreign tax residency to open a bank account digitally and they are required to go to bank branches in order to physically sign a series of documents. These customers are required to complete special forms, beyond those required to open a traditional bank account, and which until now were not accessible digitally. In addition, hundreds of thousands of Israeli citizens whose mother tongue is English find it difficult to conduct business in Hebrew on digital applications.

Amnon Shashua. Photo credit: Yonatan Heffner

“No one should have to spend half a working day opening a bank account in 2021,” said Arik Chicotay, VE of Banking at First Digital Bank. “As a technology-based bank, we have created an infrastructure that will allow any citizen to easily open a bank account and receive customer service, anytime, anywhere. By combining an English application, we will remove barriers and make banking services accessible to a significant part of the population. We hope and believe that the banking system will follow our example and save its customers from having to go to a branch for a process that can to be.”

The first digital bank, controlled by seasoned entrepreneur Amnon Shashua, is currently operating in pilot mode and is expected to officially launch to the general public in early 2022. The digital bank is the first new bank to be established in Israel in 43 years. The digital bank already has a banking license to operate in Israel and today employs 150 people. The bank also signed an agreement to issue credit cards with Isracard and registered as a business partner on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange for its planned operations in the venture capital market.


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