How to Set up a Business in Australia


Last Updated on January 19, 2024 by Asfa Rasheed

Taking the plunge into a new business venture is both exciting and daunting. On the one hand, you’ll finally be in charge; you’ll be the master of your own destiny, chasing achievement in a field that you actually care about.

On the other hand, you now have a laundry list of items to check off before you begin to ensure that everything goes smoothly. Working for someone else relieves these responsibilities, but the company owner is responsible for all of them.

Not only that, but each country has its own set of rules, regulations, and procedures for starting a business. So, even if you’ve launched a firm in one country, you’ll need to conduct extensive study to ensure that it’s done correctly in another.

According to the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman’s July 2019 report, the larger the business, the better its chances of survival. Small enterprises with less than 19 employees have a 59.7% success rate. Businesses with 20 to 199 employees had a substantially higher success rate, at 75.8%.

We’ve put up a list of the most important items to consider when beginning a business in Australia, at the very least:

1. Register your company with ASIC

You can register your business online with the Australian Government’s Business Registration Service (BRS) or through a third-party service provider. ASIC will issue an ACN (which will be used to apply for an ABN) for your business, register it, and issue a certificate of registration once the application has been finalised.

Reminder: Before doing business in Australia, foreign enterprises must register with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) as a registered foreign company.

2. File for an ABN (Australian Business number)

The ABN (Australian Business Number) is an 11-digit number that uniquely identifies your company. To do business in Australia, you’ll need an ABN.

It’s also required for tax and other commercial activities in Australia, such as invoicing, claiming GST credits, and registering domain name. Even if you are not a resident of Australia, you can apply for an ABN.

3. Register Your Tax File Number (TFN)

To file a tax return for your business, you’ll need a tax file number. You’ll need a different TFN for your firm unless you’re a lone trader. Most firms can apply for their TFN at the same time that they apply for an ABN.

4. Register your Business name with ASIC

After creating your ABN, you can also register your business name with ASIC and for that, you’ll need:

  • your eleven-digit ABN number
  • a valid address, where your documents will be delivered
  • your primary business address (PO addresses are considered invalid)
  • an email address (preferably your business email address)

The confirmation of your business name registration takes between 2-5 business days. Consider registering your business name as a trademark with IP Australia if you want to make it exclusive.

5. Buy your own Domain name

You can register your domain name once you’ve registered your business name. If you want domain for your business, you’ll need an ABN / ACN.

6. Open a Business account in a local bank

In order to run a business in Australia, you’ll almost always need a local bank account. As a result, it is better to prepare it ahead of time. If you do business outside of Australia, you may be required to go to Australia to meet the bank’s identification verification (KYC) requirements.

Alternatively, you can collaborate with service providers such as ABN Australia to assist you to speed the account opening process.

7. Know the law

You must obtain the proper licences and permits for your industry in order to lawfully operate a business in Australia.

To learn more about the licences you’ll need to start and run a business in Australia, go to the Australian Business Licence and Information Service website. For further queries regarding the legal process, you can contact Gold Coast lawyers to get some professional advice.

Over to you…

Starting a business needs a significant amount of effort and dedication. It’s crucial to understand what’s involved and whether you’re cut out for business and self-employment. I urge that you take some time to assess yourself and the obstacles of running a business.

Make sure you don’t make any rash decisions. It’s your company, and it’s critical that you understand how things work in Australia, or anywhere else for that matter.

Apart from this, if you want to know about Popular ways to rebrand your business then please visit our Business category