We’ve pulled together a list of key Australian Business Facts from the Australian Bureau of Statistics report from 2018.

  1. 96% of all business in Australia is small business – it is the engine room of our economy.
  2. In the 2018 financial year, 22,018 Australian businesses became insolvent. The main reasons for insolvency were: inadequate cash flow, poor strategic management and trading losses.
  3. Small businesses employ over 4.5 million people, which represents more than half the Australian workforce.
  4.  The A.T.O. found that 65% of small businesses found that managing cash flow was their biggest concern.
  5. Poor cash flow and management of cash flow are the main causes of outstanding taxation debt.
  6. in 2018 16% of businesses sought debt or equity finance. Of these, 89% obtained finance.
  7. in 2018 Businesses reported the main reason for seeking debt or equity finance was to maintain short term cash flow or liquidity (41%), followed by finance sought to replace other equipment or machinery (30%).
  8. Business use of IT: Over half of innovation-active businesses reported a social media presence (59%), compared to less than a quarter of non-innovation active businesses (26%).
  9. More than two in five businesses (42%) monitored KPIs, with 79% of these businesses focussing on financial measures which included profit, sales, market share and return on investment. More than twice the proportion of innovation-active businesses monitored KPIs than non innovation-active businesses (57% compared to 26% of businesses).
  10. Two in ten businesses (20%) were significantly affected by environmental factors. The Agriculture, forestry and fishing industry recorded the highest proportion of businesses that were affected by natural disasters (35%) and high or increased resource costs (21%).
  11. More than a third of all businesses reported that their Principal Manager had completed a bachelor degree or higher (34%) and had management/business specialist skills (38%) in addition to their formal qualification.
  12. Four out of every five Australian businesses reported a male Principal Manager (80%). By industry, the highest proportions of male Principal Managers were recorded in the Construction (95%), and Mining (94%) industries. The Health care and social assistance industry recorded the highest proportion of businesses with a female Principal Manager (44%).
  13. The most commonly reported age range of Principal Managers in Australian businesses was 50 to 59 years old (30%). The most commonly reported age range for innovation-active businesses was 40 to 49 years old (29%).
  14. 30% of business owners in South Australia are over the age of 65 compared to the national average of 22%