So...I happen to have some amount of capital to invest and thinking if creating a small bank offshore has some future in it. The competition isn't that fierce, you will find less than 10 companies online that offer incorporating services and most of them are just brokers/middlemen and not actual banks or financial intstitutions that offer check cards/swift bank transfers, etc. The only serious competition one would face is from HSBC and Barclays( which is obviously something, see here: http://www.offshore.hsbc.com/1/2/international/expat?WT.srch=1&WT.mc_id=HBIB_2010_05_1008 , http://www.offshore.barclays.com/ ) - and forget i told that but there are 2 ways in which people will chose a newly registered bank and not hsbc/barx - one of which: if their business isn't so...legal and the other one: when they simply need diversification - like you have an account at hsbc but you wish to insure yourself and put some money in say "bank of seychelles limited" or whatever. What concerns me other than competition is that the current trend is very antioffshore...that is irs/sec and all government institutions will jail me for no reason even if everything is duly documented - also...9 out of 10 people will label me a ponzi/pyramid or whatever. Speaking about costs, I am planning to register it as a new zealand financial institution which will cost about $30k and $5k yearly fees, while i have about $120k put aside for investments ,i am a software developer and my brother is a lawyer which will save some costs (...i mean i can develop website, advertise it cheaply, etc.). The great advantage again are the financials - for instance when I advetize it on google adwords (targeted advertising) - even i have one in 200 hundred people to open an account (which is a very low success ratio) it turns out that the ROI will be about 80%-90%, let alone when customers place money into their accounts - i can arbitrage from reinvesting in say little risk investments like government bonds, other banks, etc. 10x!