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DOING BUSINESS IN AUSTRALIA

Since 2003, Healy Consultants Group has assisted our multi-national Clients’ Clients with company registration in Australia. Our professional services include i) Australia company formation services ii) Australia business license registration services iii) Australian nominee director services iv) corporate bank account opening services in Australia v) Australia company statutory accounting and tax services vi) Australia office rental solutions and vii) employee recruitment and visa services.

Choose Healy Consultants for your Australia company setup needs and benefit from our customized services, expertise and exceptional support.

Contact us today to explore how we can support your business in Australia.

Australia company formation guide: Contents

Benefits and problems of doing business in Australia

  • Our multi-national Clients’ are attracted to the Australian market because it presents many business opportunities including:
    • Australia is the world’s 14th largest economy, where English is the primary business language. The key sectors of the Australian economy are health and education (13.2%), mining (11.5%), finance (8.0%), construction (7.4%) and manufacturing (6.0%). Between 1991 and 2019, the country’s economy expanded steadily without recession; and
    • At present, the most significant growth opportunities in Australia are in sectors such as i) enhancing digital capabilities and ii) investment in new technologies and iii) and iv) healthcare and renewable energy sources and v) investment in commodities producers and support services and vi) cryptocurrency exchanges; and
    • The Australian labour force is highly educated with a strong multicultural background. Approximately 69% of Australia’s working age population has a university degree, diploma or trade qualification; and
    • Australia is blessed with an abundance of mineral and agricultural resources and i) the world’s largest producer of iron ore, gold and uranium and ii) a world leader in mineral and LNG extraction and iii) food production. Consequently, natural resources make up 49% of Australia’s exports; and
    • Most Australian imports include i) machinery such as computers, vehicles, electrical machinery and equipment and ii) mineral fuels including oil and iii) pharmaceuticals and iv) gems and precious metals and v) plastics and vi) furniture; and
    • The country has a well-developed financial sector.
  • The Australian Government supplies multiple incentives and grants and exemptions to small companies including:
    • Exemption from an independent statutory annual audit of financial statements; and
    • Export Market Development Grants to cover the costs of i) overseas market research and ii) certain overseas transport expenses and iii) establishment and maintenance of overseas sales representatives and iv) advertisements (such as brochures) for overseas distribution and v) overseas promotions such as trade fairs and exhibitions and vi) costs related to quotations and tenders for overseas export business; and
    • Export insurance and finance to cover commercial and political risks including i) bankruptcy of the buyer and ii) indemnification against non-payment of goods by the buyer and iii) repudiation by the buyer under an enforceable contract; and
    • The Manufacturing in Bond (MiB) program that allows the manufacturing of goods in a Customs-licensed warehouse, using imported components without duty. A firm with MiB approval will be able to import dutiable goods into a licensed warehouse free of goods and services tax and duty. If the goods are later re-exported, either in their original or manufactured form, no goods and services tax or duty is incurred; and
    • A 43.5% refundable tax offset for eligible entities undertaking eligible research and development (R&D) activities; and
    • An exemption from capital gains tax on the sale of non-portfolio shareholdings in a foreign company held by an Australian company, where the foreign company has an active underlying business; and
    • Under the Venture Capital Limited Partnership (VCLP) program, certain foreign VCLP investors are exempt from capital gains on the profits of the VCLP’s eligible venture capital investments; and
    • There is no longer stamp duty on the transfer of shares.
  • Australia boasts a well-established transparent legal system for litigation and arbitration, inherited from the British model. Typically, it takes around 402 days to enforce a business contract in Australia, which is significantly shorter than the average in other OECD countries. Business in Australia is conducted in a transparent, well-regulated and politically stable environment. Thus, robustly protecting multi-national Clients’ investments with i) strong IP laws for trademarks and copyright and patents and trade secrets and ii) quality local franchise rules and iii) detailed anti-competitive conduct by rival companies including misuse of market power and iv) strong consumer protection laws including product safety and v) prescriptive laws re packaging, labelling, ingredients, marketing and sale of certain products and vi) strong anti-bribery laws at federal, state and territory levels. Australia is a signatory to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption and the OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions; and
  • Australia has an AAA international credit rating with a well-developed, sophisticated financial market. As an ASX Exempt Foreign Listing, a foreign company can fast list its securities on the ASX and not required to comply with the majority of the ASX Listing Rules. Furthermore, investors with access to the US markets are also able to invest in certain ASX-listed entities by way of American Depositary Receipts; and
  • There are simple strategies to legally minimise Australian taxes including:
    • If certain conditions are met, management and service fees paid to an overseas parent company do not suffer Australian withholding tax, while simultaneously allowed as an expense deduction against the Australian subsidiary annual net profits; and
    • An Australian non-resident branch of a foreign company is legally tax exempt of Australian corporation tax if i) sales income is derived from overseas customers and ii) there is no permanent establishment in Australia; and
    • Local income of an Australian tax resident branch suffers 30% corporation tax. No further Australian taxes are paid when branch profits are remitted overseas; and
    • Australia has double tax treaties with more than 45 countries, including the USA and most of Western Europe and Asia; and
    • Australian tax rules provide an exemption for dividends from i) controlled foreign companies and ii) branch profits from operations in foreign jurisdictions.
  • It is difficult for an Australian small company to be profitable. Australia is a tax punitive country, with little cash flow left after payment of i) corporation tax of 30% and ii) personal income tax of 47% and iii) withholding tax of 30% on overseas remittances and iv) fringe benefits taxes of 47% and v) GST of 10% and vi) high payroll costs. Furthermore, Australian companies and individuals are taxed on worldwide income. Consequently, the 2023 World Competitiveness Yearbook poorly ranked Australia at 61 out of 63 countries for entrepreneurship;
  • During the company incorporation process, multi-national Clients’ face some logistical challenges including:
    • All directors of an Australian business must secure a DIN number from the Australian ABRS. It can take up to 3 months to secure this number. Fortunately, Healy Consultants Group has a legal workaround solution to minimize a delay to the company incorporation process;
    • In accordance with Section 201A of the Australia Corporations Act 2001, every Australian Company must appoint at least one director who is ordinarily resident in Australia. Most of our Clients request Healy Consultants Group to provide a nominee professional, passive resident director;
    • Securing an Australian Business Number (ABN) can take 6 weeks;
    • Before multi-currency corporate bank account approval, there is a 75% probability that Australian banks will request a face-to-face meeting with one director or the bank signatory;
    • The requirements around business regulatory licensing varies from Australian state to state. Healy Consultants Group will help our Client carefully check licensing requirements in each State; and
    • Many large Australian banks are reluctant to onboard small businesses. For example, one Australian bank requests businesses to have a minimum annual turnover of A$50 million. With our historical business relationships with Australian banks, Healy Consultants Group will timely secure multi-currency corporate bank account approvals;
  • Monthly and quarterly Government reporting is administratively heavy, requiring an average of 23 hours per month. Consequently, it is necessary to appoint independent lawyers and accountants that can be expensive. Statutory reporting obligations include i) quarterly advance corporation tax payments and ii) monthly GST payments and iii) Austrac reports for overseas transactions exceeding A$ 10,000 and iv) payroll reporting. Furthermore, each of Australia’s states and territories imposes their own form of taxes including stamp duty, payroll tax and land tax;
  • International trading to and from Australia is difficult because i) of its remote geographical location and distance from other countries and ii) high transport and logistical costs and iii) inefficient customs clearance procedures. This is why the World Bank poorly ranks Australia at 106 out of 250, for trading across borders;
  • While doing business in Australia, multi-national Clients’ encounter multiple annual challenges including:
    • To solve banking problems, Australian banks require bank signatories to ring, but bankers only accept calls during Australian business hours! impractical and unhelpful for our European and USA Clients’;
    • Similar to the USA and Canada, our Clients’ need to be familiar with i) federal law and ii) State laws and iii) territory laws and iv) local council laws; and
    • Labour relations are highly regulated and favor employees;
    • Because of stringent environmental protection regulations at federal and state and territory and local council level; our Clients’ may need an environmental licence or permit for their business activity.
  • Employing Staff in Australian is difficult because:
    • Staff productivity is low because Australian employees i) must not be required to work beyond a maximum of 38 hours per week and ii) enjoy a minimum of 20 days of paid annual leave per year and 10 days of paid leave per year and iii) additional long service leave legislation in each state and territory and iv) up to 24 months of unpaid leave upon the birth of a child and v) 8 public holidays per year. Consequently, the 2022 World Competitiveness Yearbook poorly ranked Australia at 41 out of 63 countries for workplace productivity; and
    • Australian employees are expensive because i) employers must contribute 11% to their superannuation fund and ii) employers must purchase workers’ compensation insurance and iii) employees enjoy generous redundancy severance payments and iv) employers must pay fringe benefits tax for non-monetary remuneration and v) employers must comply with aggressive work health and safety laws and vi) pay high payroll taxes and vii) employment laws differ between state and territories and viii) the strong presence of trade unions and ix) aggressive anti-discrimination legislation.
    • Multi-national Clients’ will likely require Australian Government approval i) before they can conduct business in the sectors of mining and agribusiness and media and telecommunications and transport and ii) before the purchase land and commercial property;

Best uses for an Australian company

  1. Healy Consultants Group recommends an Australian company as the ideal regional Asia Pacific base because:
    • There are a number of new growth industries emerging including i) cryptocurrency exchanges ii) online food and grocery delivery platforms iii) ride share and car share services iv) organic crop farming v) solar power and vi) IT consulting;
    • Australia is an excellent base from which to market products and services to stakeholders in New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.

Types of company structures in Australia

A foreign company establishing a business presence in Australia usually establishes an Australian subsidiary company or a branch office.

The Australian limited liability company

  • The Australian limited liability company (private proprietary company) is the most common type of entity in Australia. Most companies, particularly small companies, are proprietary limited and must include the word “Proprietary” and “Limited” or “Pty Ltd” in their name;
  • Forming an LLC in Australia can be done with only i) one shareholder ii) one resident director iv) no minimum paid-up share capital. To help our overseas Clients’, Healy Consultants Group can provide resident director services;
  • The private proprietary company must prepare annual financial statements. Only if annual sales exceed AU$75,000 (approximately US$55,000), the Australian authorities require local businesses to register for and report GST;
  • A proprietary company is prohibited from raising funds from the public.

The Australian trading trust

  • In Australia, a business may be carried on through a trust, where a trustee (often a proprietary limited company) owns assets of the business and carries on the trading activities on behalf of the beneficiaries of the trust.
  • Income arising from a trust is generally taxed in the hands of the beneficiary rather than the trustee. The trading trust is an interesting business vehicle for a family-owned business.
  • The most common business trust is a unit trust under which the beneficiaries’ interests in the trust are divided into “units”. The trading trust is usually structured as a tax transparent entity, not subject to corporate income tax in Australia, provided all its income is transferred to the trust’s beneficiaries;
  • To obtain an Australian Business Number and a Tax File Number, the trustee(s) must register the trust with the Australian Companies Registrar and with the ATO. Furthermore, it is necessary to appoint a resident trustee and a public officer;

The Australian limited liability partnership (LLP)

  • Incorporation of an LLP can be done between i) general partners who are personally liable for the partnership’s activities and ii) limited partners who are only liable for their committed contribution at the formation of the partnership. At least one general partner must be residing in Australia;
  • Partnerships are usually tax transparent. The income derived through the partnership is not taxable at the “corporate” level but as personal business income of the partners themselves. The partnership however is still subject to standard GST and employer registrations;
  • If a partnership carries on business other than under the names of the partners, its business name must be registered in each relevant state and territory;
  • Quite often, a partnership will appoint a company to carry on the partnership business and act as an agent for the partners.

The Australian public limited company (unlisted public company)

Registration of a public company in Australia follows similar requirements to those of a proprietary company. The main differences are i) the need to appoint at least three directors, two ordinarily resident in Australia and ii) the obligation for the annual financial statements to be submitted for an independent statutory annual audit; and

The Australian branch

  • A foreign company wishing to establish a place of business or carry on a business in Australia without incorporating a local subsidiary must register as a foreign company with ASIC and obtain an ARBN;
  • The incorporation of a branch requires the appointment of a local agent to accept notices on behalf of the foreign company and a legal registered office address. After its registration, the branch must submit annual financial statements to the Australian Companies Registrar (ASIC);
  • An overseas company carrying on business in Australia through a branch is subject to Australian company tax at the current rate of 30% on profits attributable to that branch;

The Australian representative office

A foreign company which does not intend to conduct business in Australia may seek to establish a representative office for marketing and research. The representative office is allowed to conduct only limited, non-commercial activities in Australia; and

Setting up an Australia financial services company

  • To conduct financial services businesses in Australia, Healy Consultants Group will secure an Australia Financial Services (AFS) licence for our Clients. This licence is regulated by ASIC;
  • An AFS licence is required if the business activity includes i) providing financial product advices to customers ii) dealing with financial products iii) market making iv) custodial or depository services or v) trustee company services;
  • ASIC reviews and approves licence applications within four months. During the review, there is a 70% probability ASIC will revert asking for additional know your customer (KYC) documents.

Steps to take for AFS licence application

  1. Prior to licence application, Healy Consultants Group will assist our Client to prepare required documents such as i) a quality business plan ii) licence application form iii) ‘fit and proper’ people proofs iv) organisational competence and v) financial statements and financial resources;
  2. If required, Healy Consultants Group will assist our Client to draft internal control documents such as i) risk management policies ii) external dispute resolutions iii) AML/CFT policies and iv) general terms and conditions;
  3. To qualify for an AFS licence, our Client is required to have local economic substance. Healy Consultants Group will help to secure a local physical office in the Central Business District, as well as help hire qualified local employees. One local employee should be appointed as a Responsible Manager and is required to be fit and proper. Thereafter, monthly rentals and salaries will be paid directly by our Client to the landlord and employees;
  4. In the event ASIC decides to grant our Client an AFS licence, a draft licence will be issued. Once our Client confirms to proceed, ASIC will send a requirements letter. Our Client is given a timeline to finalise any outstanding matters as quickly as possible;
  5. Once step 4 is completed, ASIC will send the final licence to our Client. The final licence will include i) licensee’s name ii) Australian Business Number (ABN) iii) licence number and iv) date of effect of the licence. Our Client will then be able to legally conduct financial services in Australia.

Comparison of company solutions in Australia

Compare different Australian entities Tax resident LLC Branch office Representative office LLP
Entity locally known as Pty. Ltd. Branch RO LLP
Best use of legal entity? All products and services Completing projects without an office Marketing and research Professional services
Legally tax exempt if properly structured? No Yes Yes Yes
Corporate bank account location? Westpac Standard Chartered HSBC Commonwealth
Client must travel to Australia? No No No No
Australia Resident director/partner/manager required? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Can secure trade finance? Yes Yes No Yes
Limited liability entity? Yes No No Yes
GST payable on sales to local customers? 10% 10% No 10%
Withholding tax on dividends to foreign shareholders? 30% 30% No 30%
Australia tax payable on worldwide income? Yes Yes No No
Average total engagement costs? US$16,292 US$16,292 AU$9,660 AU$9,637
Average total engagement period? 2 months 2 months 2 months 2 months

See full table

Accounting and tax considerations Tax resident LLC Branch office Representative office LLP
Statutory corporation tax payable? 25% for SMEs, 30% otherwise 25% for SMEs, 30% otherwise 0% 0%
Must file an annual Australia tax return? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Must file annual financial statements? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Investment income is legally tax exempt in Australia? No No No No
Access to double taxation treaties? Yes Yes No Yes
Monthly/Quarterly GST reporting to the Government? Yes Yes No Yes
Legally tax exempt entity? No No Yes Yes
Must appoint a public officer? Yes Yes Yes No
Dividends received are legally tax exempt? No No No No
Company registration Tax resident LLC Branch office Representative office LLP
Minimum number of shareholders/partners/beneficiaries? 1 Parent company Parent company 2
Minimum number of directors/managers/trustees? 1 1 1 2
Director ID required for directors in all entities? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Minimum paid up share capital? None None None None
Shelf companies available? Yes No No No
Time to incorporate a new entity? 1 week 2 weeks 2 weeks 1 week
Can have preference shareholders/partners/beneficiaries? Yes No No Yes
Business considerations Tax resident LLC Branch office Representative office LLP
Can invoice local customers? Yes Yes No Yes
Can hire local staff? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Can rent local office space? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Secures a residence visa for business owner? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Good entity for trademark registration? Yes Yes No No

Australia has signed free trade agreements (click link)? Yes, see AU FTAs page
This country is a member of WIPO and TRIPS? Yes
This country is a member of the ICSID? Yes
Average custom duties suffered? 1.9%
Government foreign investment approval required? No
Average monthly office rental? (US$ per sq m) A$54
Minimum statutory monthly salary? AU$2,600
Average monthly US$ salary for local employees? AU$6,500
Australia $ deposit interest rate? (1 year average) 2.5%
US$ deposit interest rate? (1 year average) 0.75%
Overseas remittance currency controls? No
Public registrar of shareholders and directors? Yes
Banking considerations
Multi-currency bank accounts available? Yes
Corporate visa debit cards available? Yes
Quality of e-banking platform? Excellent
Crowd funding available in this country? Yes

Steps to incorporating a company in Australia

The process of starting a business in Australia is usually straightforward. A properly planned registration of an Australian company can be completed within one week. The procedure is outlined in the following steps below.

Australian company pre-incorporation procedure

  1. Consultation: Before commencing the engagement, our Client to i) settle Healy Consultants Group’s engagement fees and ii) email the signed engagement letter and necessary due diligence documents. We recommend our Clients to email us a completed copy of the engagement letter, so we can then email them a tailored checklist of documents required, minimizing administrative burden;
  2. Corporate structure: Our team and the Client reach an agreement on i) three preferred new company names and ii) the corporate structure. Thereafter, our Client signs i) the board resolution (shareholders) authorizing the company incorporation in Australia and ii) consent forms (directors and shareholders);
  3. Public officer: In compliance with Australian law, our client must appoint a Public Officer (PO). The PO is the Company’s representative to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and is responsible for i) maintaining accurate and complete accounting and tax records ii) timely submitting monthly, quarterly and annual Government reporting to the ATO, including payroll and GST (locally filed under a single return known as BAS return) and iii) submitting accurate and complete financial statements and corporation tax returns to the Australian Government;
  4. Company secretary: Our Client must appoint a company secretary, who may be a natural person or a body corporate, but the company secretary must be resident in Australia. Healy Consultants Group includes company secretary services in the standard Australia incorporation package;
  5. Registered office: In accordance with the Australia Incorporations Act 2001, our client is required to file an address with the Company Register, to which all official Government communications and notices may be addressed. The client may use their own physical space in Australia or request our Firm to supply the registered office address services to comply with this legal requirement;
  6. All incoming directors, along with existing directors, of an Australian company must register with ASIC for a director ID. For a newly-formed company, this step must be undertaken before the company is incorporated. This step adds cost to an engagement and can take up to 2 months for completion. Fortunately, we have a workaround strategy for our Clients in urgent need of a company number. Whenever needed, we alternatively can initially register the Australian business with our nominee as temporary single resident director, then add our Client’s appointees immediately after they secure their own DIN. With this strategy, Healy Consultants Group will complete registration of the Australian business within 3 working days from application submission.

Australia company incorporation steps

  1. Name reservation: Healy Consultants Group checks name availability with the Australian Business Register (ABR). If available, we complete and submit Form 410 to formally reserve the same. To hasten the setup process, our experts recommend incorporating the company initially using a nominee director;
  2. Australia company registration: Our team submits Form 201 to the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) to secure company incorporation. Once the company is incorporated, we email our Client certificates of registration of a company including i) the public profile of the company and ii) the certificate of incorporation and iii) the unique nine-digit Australian Company Number (ACN);
  3. Australian company tax registration: Healy Consultants Group secures tax registrations with the Australian Tax Office including i) the Australia Business Number (ABN) for the company and ii) the Tax Filing Number for relevant individuals;
  4. Change of corporate structure: Our team submits an online application to modify the company structure. Upon completion, Healy Consultants Group emails our Client the new public profile of the private company incorporated in Australia. Sample available here;
  5. Opening corporate bank account: Healy Consultants Group will prepare a detailed quality business plan to secure a corporate bank account opening. We will courier i) the completed bank account opening forms and ii) certified passport copies and proof of addresses of all directors, shareholders and signatories to the relevant bank. Our preferred banking partners include Westpac, ANZ, CBA and NAB;

Australian company post-incorporation procedure

  1. Register for GST and Worker Compensation Insurance: If required, Healy Consultants Group registers the company for i) GST with the ATO (if the annual turnover is higher than AU$75,000) and ii) Worker Compensation Insurance with the local insurance agency (if our Client plans to hire local employees);
  2. Submit annual returns: Every Australian company is required to submit an annual return to ASIC on the anniversary of its inception. Healy Consultants Group will assist our Clients with fulfilling this annual obligation as a part of our accounting and tax services package;
  3. Engagement Completion: The company incorporation process in Australia is complete. Healy Consultants Group couriers the full company kit to our Client, including i) original corporate documents ii) the corporate key iii) unopened bank correspondence and iv) Client feedback form.

Required documents for Australia company incorporation

  • Signed director consent forms;
  • Signed shareholder consent forms;
  • Signed office agreement;
  • Notarized passport copies of all directors and shareholders;
  • Notarized proofs of addresses of all directors and shareholders;
  • Signed corporate bank account opening forms.

Australia company resident director services

Healy Consultants has helped many Clients register companies in Australia for a wide variety of purposes. The majority of our Clients request Healy Consultants to provide an Australian resident director to fulfill Australia minimum officeholder requirements.

  1. The Australia Corporations Act 2001 requires all registered or incorporated private limited companies in Australia to appoint at least one individual director who is ordinarily resident in Australia;
  2. For public companies however, the minimum number of directors is increased to three, two of whom are required to be Australia residents;
  3. It can be challenging to find a professional local nominee director for a trading company given the obligations involved therefore we advise our Clients to exercise precaution before appointing a nominee.
  4. Since 2022, Australian directors are required to secure an ID number with ASIC.
  5. In the event our Client is unable to identity an Australia resident director, Healy Consultants will be happy to provide nominee resident director services to meet this requirement;
  6. Healy Consultants will provide a professional nominee to act as resident director for an Australia company of any Client who requires this service. The nominee will be a director of the company in name only and will not have other business responsibilities;
  7. Healy Consultants officers will neither be a bank signatory to the corporate bank account, nor be appointed as the Public Officer (PO) nor play an active role in our Client’s business;
  8. Healy Consultants officers will merely be the name director or shareholder of the company in order to fulfill local statutory requirements. Our Client is solely responsible for daily business activities and solely responsible for corporate bank account activity.
  9. For Australian regulated businesses, including financial companies, Healy Consultants Group will offer a professional nominee resident director with adequate professional background and education to fulfill this role for our Client. Due to elevated compliance and reputation risk in being a professional nominee resident director in a regulated company, Healy Consultants Group will charge an increased professional annual fee will range from USS$8,000 to USS$12,000 based on complexity. Within 1 week from formal engagement, our Client will receive a list of proposed nominees to consider.
  10. Multi-national Clients’ appointing Healy Consultants as nominee passive professional nominee resident directors also appoint our Firm as Public Officer and local accountant. Healy Consultants Group will be pleased to assume the role of all three. Email us to get a quotation for these services;
  11. Appointing Healy Consultants as resident director minimizes inconvenience for our Clients when liaising with the Australian Taxation office and other government institutions. However note that our passive nominee resident director services do not include appointment as PO. Healy Consultants will only act as PO if we are appointed local accountant and person responsible for all Government tax reporting;
  12. Appointing Healy Consultants as resident director can also help our Client maintain their personal privacy. This is advantageous to those Clients who value anonymity and would therefore not want their names to appear on the companies register.
  13. Our Australian resident nominee(s) already have a DIN to ensure timely appointment to our Client’s company.

Healy Consultants fees for Australian company nominee director services

  1. Healy Consultants’ annual resident director fee amounts to US$5,890;
  2. For regulated businesses, Healy Consultants Group will charge an increased professional annual fee ranging from USS$8,000 to USS$12,000 based on complexity
  3. Healy Consultants does not normally allow Clients to pay Australia resident director fees by instalments. We normally require full payment up front for the year. However, we may consider half-yearly payments for companies in good standing.

Australia corporate banking services

Australian corporate banking problems and solutions

No. Australia banking problem Solution
1.

Australian banks are choosy about the customers they onboard. Top tier banks increasingly focus on large, profitable, low risk corporate Clients. Generally, Australian banks are neither interested in small companies, nor companies incorporated outside Australia.

Since 2003, Healy Consultants Group has built quality banking relationships with Australian banks. Local banks trust and welcome our multi-national Clients. A quality business plan is a big help.

Healy Consultants Group has a guaranteed corporate bank account approval policy.

2.

Global banks continue to tighten corporate bank account opening procedures, their internal compliance departments completing more thorough due diligence of Clients. Consequently, our Clients should expect Australia bank account approval to take up to three months.

If our Client requires a bank account at short notice, we recommend an immediate Australia solution (Australian company plus already-approved Australian corporate bank account).

3.

Before, during and after bank meetings, the bank’s In-house Legal and Compliance Department reverts multiple times for additional documentation and information from each i) bank signatory / director / UBOs of the companies as well as ii) our Client’s business and transactions.

If some banks decline to board our Client’s business, Healy Consultants Group will immediately inform our Client and action backup banking solutions

4.

Bank requests foreign directors and bank signatories to travel for a one-hour interview before account numbers are issued.

Healy Consultants Group will relentlessly negotiate with the bank to secure a travel waiver.

The Australian corporate banking sector

  • Australia is business-friendly, reputable and stable, portraying an excellent image to our multinational Clients’ international customers and suppliers. The country has a secure banking and finance system, and Sydney is a top 20 global financial centre.
  • The health of Australia’s economy depends heavily on Asian (particularly Chinese) demand for its minerals and natural resources. During economic downturns, such as in 2020, the country’s trade balance and capital account is negatively impacted. Political and trade tensions with China, the biggest importer of Australian natural resources, weighs on the Australian dollar and hampers economic recovery.
  • Australia entered its first recession in three decades in 2020. Though the government is supporting businesses, more local entities are going bankrupt, and loan defaults will cause some local banks to seek government assistance. In September 2020, the government announced it would loosen bank lending regulations to boost credit flows and support the economy, although i) recession ii) high unemployment and iii) weak consumer and business sentiment impacts banks’ asset quality in Australia.
  • Australia recorded a capital flow deficit of A$18.6 billion in the second quarter of 2020 (A$10.8 billion in the previous quarter). In September 2020, Australia’s foreign currency stockpile was AS$438 billion.
  • The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBI) is known for maintaining stability of the Australian dollar (one of the world’s most traded currencies), though it rarely intervenes in the currency market. RBI imposes some of the world’s highest interest rates to control inflation.
  • Because banks are looking to cut costs, we expect many branches of traditional ‘high street’ banks to close across Australia, and for more services to be transferred online.
  • Digital banks are licensed to operate in Australia since 2018. These ‘virtual banks’ are an excellent alternative to conventional banks, with a similar range of services accessed via an app and lower account service fees.
  • There are no foreign exchange controls in Australia. There is a free flow of funds for remittances of profits, dividends, debt service, capital, capital gains, branch profits, royalties, and returns on intellectual property or imports.
  • Overall, Healy Consultants Group recommends Australian banks as a solution for local companies doing business globally.
  • The Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority (APRA) regulates and supervises i) 88 Australia-owned deposit-taking institutions ii) seven foreign subsidiary banks and iii) 48 branches of foreign banks.
  • Branches of foreign banks in Australia include i) HSBC ii) Barclays Bank iii) Deutsche Bank iv) JP Morgan Chase and v) Standard Chartered. The four largest retail banks in Australia are i) Commonwealth Bank ii) Westpac Banking Corporation iii) National Australia Bank (NAB) and iv) Australia & New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ), which offer good online banking and customer service. Our relationships with these banks simplifies the process of opening new accounts as your business grows in Australia and worldwide.
  • Many Australian banks are reluctant to onboard small businesses. For example, one bank in Australia requests businesses to have a minimum annual turnover of A$50 million to be onboarded.
  • Other reasons Australian banks give for rejecting new accounts include i) due to security and compliance reasons they are unable to verify new Clients based overseas ii) all new Clients must have an Australian ABN and Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) listing and must attend the Australia bank branch for verification iii) only opening accounts for wholly-owned by Australian companies (i e they will not onboard a company which is beneficially owned by companies not registered in Australia).
  • As well as Australian dollar accounts, local banks offer multi-currency corporate bank accounts in US$, euros, NZ$, sterling and Asian currencies. Banks offer corporate credit and debit cards, cheque books, loans and wealth management products. If you open a foreign currency account along with an Australian dollar account, transfers can easily be made between the two.
  • Most Australian banks do not charge account opening, maintenance or closing fees.
  • On average, Australian banks take three months to issue account numbers and e-banking access.
  • Deposits in Australian-incorporated banks, building societies and credit unions are protected by law up to A$250,000 per account holder. Although Australian banks rarely fail, the Financial Claims Scheme provides comfort for multinational investors.
  • In our experience, Australian banks do not board companies that are not incorporated in Australia.
  • Australia is the world’s sixth most cashless country on earth. Even the smallest transactions can be completed by local and international debit and credit cards, as well as methods such as Apple Pay, Merchant Warrior, Bambora, SecurePay and Fat Zebra.
  • All Australian bank branch staff speak English, and correspondence and online banking etc is in English.
  • In 2020, Australian banks pay up to 0.9% interest on Australian dollar fixed term deposits.
  • Australia is a signatory to the Common Reporting Standard (CRS), a global initiative to clamp down on tax evasion. As a result, banks operating in Australia share information on accounts and account holders with tax authorities where the company/individual is tax-resident.
  • It is important that our Clients are aware of their corporate and legal obligations in Australia and that they timely fulfil the same. Let us know if you require Healy Consultants Group’s assistance to timely and efficiently complete your legal and corporate responsibilities.

Australia corporate bank account opening procedure

  • For our Clients forming a new company in Australia, Healy Consultants Group can assist in opening an international corporate bank account within three months of company formation.
  • We recommend keeping the corporate structure simple at the time of company incorporation by appointing our Client’s preferred individual shareholder(s) and director(s) and bank signatories. We do not recommend a corporate entity, nominee, trust, or a holding company in a tax neutral jurisdiction.
  • It is difficult to obtain Australia corporate bank account approval through newly-formed companies when shareholders, directors and bank signatories reside overseas. Depending on the nationality of the UBO, shareholders, bank signatories, and directors and the nature and value of the business assets and transactions, it is wise to expect that i) corporate bank account approvals will take an average of three months from the date of company registration and receipt of all KYC documentation and ii) multiple banks will request the directors AND bank signatories travel for a one hour interview with the bank officer, before bank account opening.
  • Top-tier Australian banks now require Clients to travel to meet a bank officer.
  • Following review of the application and before approving the corporate bank account, the bank will request our Client to courier all original corporate and personal due diligence and other supporting documents directly to Australia. These include i) a notary-certified true copy of your Company Registration Certificate ii) Memorandum & Articles of Association/Charter disclosing the directors/shareholders iii) certified true copy of passport for all shareholders/directors and account signatories iv) certified passport size photographs v) original certified copy of proof of address vi) board resolution appointing the bank signatories vii) a letter requesting for opening of the corporate bank account and viii) completed, preapproved, and signed bank account opening forms.
  • During the corporate bank account opening process, it is common for each bank’s in-house Legal and Compliance Department to request additional due diligence documents from potential customers including but not limited to i) regulatory licences ii) proof of business globally and in home country including evidence of contracts, invoices and agreements with local Clients and iii) additional KYC information on our Client’s business and place of residency, including nature and volume of transactions.
  • If some banks decline to board our Client’s business, Healy Consultants Group will immediately inform our Client and action backup banking solutions.
  • Following bank account approval, the bank will email our Client the corporate bank account numbers directly. There is no need for our Client to travel to complete the process.

Healy Consultants Group fees to help open a corporate bank account in Australia

Healy Consultants Group guarantees Australia company bank account approval. Our fees for different banking services include:

Australia banking task Our Client travels A$
Australia bank account for an Australian company No 4,950
Australia personal bank account No 4,950

Our multi-currency corporate bank account opening fees cover the following support services:

  • Preparing a quality business plan for our Client’s review then use the same to maximise the probability of successful multi-currency corporate bank account approval with our Client’s preferred bank.
  • Healy Consultants Group’s Banking Team completing, on our Client’s behalf, the multi-currency corporate bank account application forms and collating Know Your Customer (KYC) due diligence documents.
  • Healy Consultants Group’s Banking Team visiting the Australian bank to submit i) required due diligence and ii) signing all required paperwork.
  • Over the following weeks, the bank officer reverting to Healy Consultants Group multiple times to prepare an accurate, complete multi-currency corporate bank account opening file. When the Australian bank officer is ready, our Client will convene a Skype video call with the bank.
  • Following successful completion of the above, the bank officer submitting a complete potential customer file to the bank Legal and Compliance Department.
  • After several weeks, e-mailing multi-currency corporate bank account numbers to our Client.
  • Within three weeks, arranging our Client to receive e-banking log-in details including corporate Visa debit cards and cheque books.

Since 2003, Healy Consultants Group assists our multi-national Clients’ to timely accurately and completely discharge their annual legal & accounting & audit and tax statutory reporting obligations:

Summary of Australian corporate taxation

  • An Australian company is taxed on its worldwide income. Companies in Australia (including branches) pay corporation tax of i) 25% for SMEs and ii) 30% for all other entities. Companies are required to pay their income taxes in monthly or quarterly instalments. The taxation year runs from 1 July to 30 June in the following year. Taxpayers can apply to the ATO to adopt an accounting period which ends on another date – like 31 December;
  • Australian companies may indefinitely carry forward their business losses. Carry back of losses is also partially allowed;
  • An Australian company can elect to form a tax consolidated group with its wholly owned subsidiaries. The effect is to treat the group as a single entity for Australian income tax purposes. This means that intra-group transactions will be ignored for income tax purposes;
  • Non-resident companies are taxable only on their Australia-sourced income. A company is considered resident in Australia i) if it is incorporated in Australia or ii) if it conducts business in the country or iii) is managed and controlled from Australia or iv) its voting power is controlled by Australian resident shareholders;
  • Dividends from the foreign subsidiaries of an Australian holding company are generally exempt from tax, but no credit is available for foreign dividend withholding taxes paid. Dividends paid to a foreign parent company are withholding tax-exempt, provided corporate tax was paid on the subsidiary profits;
  • Interest paid to foreign entities from an Australia-resident company is subject to a 10% withholding tax, unless reduced by a tax treaty. For example, Australia’s tax treaties with the USA and UK can eliminate all Australian withholding tax on interest payments. Furthermore, an exemption from interest withholding tax applies to interest on debentures, notes and syndicated facilities that meet public offer requirements;
  • Royalties paid to a non-resident suffers withholding tax of 30%, unless it can be reduced by a double tax treaty. The Australian entity paying the royalty is required to withhold and remit the tax to the ATO;
  • Capital gains tax is 30% for Australia residents and 26% for non-residents. Rollover relief may be available in respect of capital gains made in relation to a disposal event where shares in one entity are exchanged for shares in another entity. Where rollover relief is available, any capital gain made on the disposal of the original shares will be deferred until the disposal of the exchanged asset;
  • Small businesses may be eligible for certain capital gains tax (CGT) concessions if the business has an aggregated turnover of less than A$2 million or the taxpayer has assets less than A$6 million. The CGT concessions include i) a 50% reduction in capital gains for active business assets and ii) a retirement exemption whereby active business assets that are sold may be partly or wholly exempt from tax if the proceeds are paid into a superannuation fund and iii) roll-over relief and iv) a 15year exemption whereby tax may not be required to be paid in respect of a gain when an active business asset that has been used for at least 15 years is disposed of;
  • The standard GST rate is 10%. Registration is mandatory for companies with turnover exceeding A$75,000. GST returns must be submitted quarterly, except for businesses whose turnover exceeds A$20 million, in which case returns must be filed monthly. An Australian GST-registered business must submit an annual Business Activity Statement (BAS) to the ATO. GST is applicable to cross-border supplies of digital products and services utilised by Australian consumers. Non-resident suppliers are required to register, collect, and remit GST on the digital products and services that they provide to Australian consumers;
  • State, territory and local governments impose some taxes which might impact foreign companies operating in the country including i) payroll tax (more applicable to larger employers) ii) stamp duty and iii) land tax;
  • Employers are required to collect and withhold pay as you go tax (PAYG) from remuneration paid to employees. Furthermore, employers must contribute 10% of an employee’s gross salary to the Social Security and Unemployment Insurance Fund;
  • Fringe benefits tax (FBT) of 47% is payable on certain cash and non-cash benefits provided to an employee in connection with his employment. FBT is imposed on and payable by the employer. Certain benefits, such as superannuation, are exempt from FBT, while other benefits, such as motor vehicles are taxed;
  • The sale and transfer of real estate is subject to a property tax up to 7%, which is levied by local authorities;
  • Personal income tax in Australia is based on a progressive tax rate, which can be up to 47% (including a Medicare levy of 2%).

Australia corporate legal, accounting, audit and tax considerations

  • All businesses operating in Australia are required to have an Australian Business Number (ABN) issued by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). The ABN is a unique identifying number used in your dealings with the ATO and other government departments;
  • The ATO requires businesses to submit a business activity statement (BAS) monthly, quarterly or annually. The BAS is used to i) report and pay goods and services tax (GST) and ii) pay as you go (PAYG) instalments and iii) PAYG withholding tax and iv) corporation tax instalments and v) Fringe Benefits Tax instalments and vi) other tax obligations. When you register for an Australian business number (ABN) and GST, the ATO will automatically send you a BAS when it is time to lodge;
  • For corporation tax purposes, businesses will also be required to register for a Tax File Number (TFN) with the ATO. Trading companies registered with the ATO will have various tax compliance obligations, including filing of an annual company tax return and the periodic reporting of activity statements. All returns can be submitted online. Occasionally, the tax return must be accompanied by an International Dealings Schedule (IDS), which will include information on the taxpayer’s dealing with, for example, parties in low tax countries;
  • For late filing of i) activity statements ii) tax returns iii) pay as you go (PAYG) withholding annual reports iv) fringe benefits tax returns v) single touch payroll reports vi) annual GST returns and information reports and vii) taxable payment annual reports, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) may impose a Failure to Lodge (FTL) on time penalty. FTL penalties are levied in units per 28 days as follows i) a small entity will be charged one penalty unit ii) a medium sized company (assessable income or current GST turnover exceeding A$1 million and less than A$20 million) two penalty units and iii) a large entity (assessable income or current GST turnover exceeding A$20 million), five penalty units. For non-payment or late payments, the ATO will levy i) interest on unpaid amounts ii) use any future refunds or credits to repay the amounts owed iii) engage an external debt collection agency;
  • Under Australia’s legal system, the information related to the corporate structure, such as shareholders, directors, shares and secretaries, is centralised by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC). Within 8 months from the financial year end, all Australian entities are required to prepare and lodge their financial statements with ASIC. Any change in the corporate structure of the entity must immediately be updated in ASIC records;
  • If your business employs staff, payments such as salaries, wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and superannuation need to be reported to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) via Single Touch Payroll (STP). STP reporting occurs as these payments happen via your preferred online payroll solution and helps reduces your reporting requirements at the end of the financial year;
  • The following entities must annually prepare audited financial statements:
    • Large proprietary companies.
    • Small proprietary companies controlled by foreign companies.
    • Companies limited by guarantee.
    • Disclosing entities.
    • Registered schemes.
    • Public companies.
  • Small Australian owned proprietary companies do not need an independent statutory annual audit if it meets two of three criteria including i) employing less than 100 employees and ii) having less than $50M of annual turnover and iii) owning less than $25M gross assets;
  • As stipulated in the Corporation Act 2001, foreign-controlled Australian subsidiaries are required to prepare and lodge audited financial statements with ASIC. This statutory task must be completed within four months of the entity’s accounting year end.
  • However, ASIC Corporations (Audit Relief) Instrument 2016/784 and Instrument 2017/204 grant certain reliefs to proprietary companies.
  • To obtain exemptions from an audit, the company must meet both of the following conditions:
    • The board of directors and members of the corporation must have unanimously voted in agreement via board resolution to waive the audit;
    • The board resolution must be filed with ASIC during the first year of reliance, or after a year of no reliance, whichever comes first.
  • A notice of the above-board resolution should be submitted to ASIC (specifically using Form 382 or Form 384) three months prior to, or within the four months after, the specific financial year-end for which the company requires the audit relief.
  • Should the company not complete the above step within the stipulated timeline, it will not be eligible for the audit relief nor will any opportunity for appeal be given.
  • Australia has a broad network of Income Tax Treaties with 46 countries around the world, including Canada, China, France, Malaysia, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States. These treaties help reduce Australian withholding tax on the repatriation of income overseas. Australia manages double taxation by either a foreign tax offset or a tax exemption;
  • In accordance with Australian tax law, every Australian company is obliged to register for tax. Unfortunately, it will take the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) approximately four weeks to issue the Tax File Number (TFN) and the Australian Business Number (ABN) for your firm. Only then can our Client issue sales invoices to customers;
  • To increase corporate tax transparency, the Australian government releases an annual report containing i) company name ii) business number iii) total income iv) taxable income and v) tax payable for a) Australian public and foreign-owned corporate tax entities with total income of A$100 million or more and b) Australian-owned resident private companies with total income of A$200 million or more. The reports are available on the Australian government website.
  • At financial year-end, an Australian employer must submit a Pay As You Go (PAYG) Payment Summary to the ATO, based on total wages and PAYG withholding accumulated during the year. Healy Consultants Group can assist our Client prepare this report;
  • Australia’s transfer pricing rules impose arm’s length terms and conditions on cross border transactions. The purpose of the rules is to ensure that an appropriate level of profit, and therefore tax, is returned to Australia. Transfer pricing applies to transactions such as goods, services, royalties and licencing, loans, guarantees and capital transactions. It also applies to behaviours such as shifting functions and risks outside of Australia or starting up a hub offshore. Australian taxpayers have an annual obligation to self-assess their cross-border arrangements with regard to local transfer pricing legislation, case law and the relevant OECD transfer pricing guidelines. This includes the preparation of specific records that explain and evidence cross-border transactions and pricing arrangements;
  • Australia has thin capitalisation rules that disallow debt deductions where the debt-to-asset ratio of Australian operations exceeds prescribed limits. The rules seeks to limit the amount of debt that can be allocated to Australian entities that are foreign controlled;
  • Australia currently has comprehensive free trade agreements with Chile, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and the United States;
  • In addition, there is an ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Area (AANZFTA) between ASEAN member states (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam);

Healy Consultants Group fees for accounting & tax support

For an active trading company, Healy Consultants Group will efficiently and effectively discharge your annual company accounting and tax obligations. Following receipt of a set of draft accounting numbers from our Client, Healy Consultants Group will more accurately advise accounting and tax fees. A summary of our fees include:

Australia accounting & tax task US$
Registration for TFN, GST and ABN 1,910
Annual accounting & tax 3,640
Quarterly BAS filing fee 850 per quarter or 3,400 per annum
Assistance with annual audit relief application (form 384) 900 per annum


Healy Consultants Group will be happy to provide a monthly book-keeping service for your Australian company. Typically, our Accounting & Tax Department (ATD) team will receive a Dropbox of data from our Client and will timely supply our Client with i) a general ledger and a trial balance and ii) monthly and quarterly management accounts and iii) monthly and quarterly government reporting, including sales tax and payroll.

Australia investment incentives

  1. The Australia government offers entrepreneurs a range of investment incentives. The body that manages these initiatives is AUSTRADE. This government agency, offers assistance with:
    • Training, research & development (R&D), and export market development;
    • Streamlined immigration procedures;
    • Sales tax exemption for selected used equipment;
    • Obtaining information for site selection;
    • Introductions to relevant government agencies and professional service providers.
  2. One scheme under Austrade is the Export Markets Development Grant (EMDG). Under this scheme, small and medium-sized Australian companies are encouraged to develop their export markets. Eligible companies can receive up to 50% reimbursement on export promotion expenses above a threshold of AU$10,000. To be eligible, companies must have spent more than AU$10,000 on export promotion expenses and have annual turnover of less than AU$50 million;
  3. Another Australian government agency is AusIndustry. AusIndustry is under the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. This agency’s incentives are based on grants schemes where applicants are awarded assistance based on the merits of their application. AusIndustry provides for a large of number of Investment Incentive schemes. Below are some examples of these schemes:
    • Green Car Innovation Fund – Provides grants of 25% of expenditure on projects that promote the R&D and commercialization of Australian fuel optimization or greenhouse gas emission reduction technologies in passenger motor vehicles;
    • Textile Clothing and Footwear Strategic Capability Program – Matches dollar for dollar the R&D expenditure in innovative projects that aim to improve Australia’s textile clothing and footwear industry;
    • Retooling for Climate Change – Provides grants of between $10,000 to $500,000 to small and medium sized Australian manufacturers with projects that aim to improve their environmental footprint.
  4. Asset management in Australia may also be achieved through Australia trust formation. Another of the important investment options in Australia, this Australia asset management services is designed for entrepreneurs and high net worth investors who need to migrate their assets into an offshore trust. Thereafter, our Clients no longer own the assets, thus minimizing international taxation and optimizing asset protection.

Main requirements for tax incentives eligibility

  1. The Australian government considers some of the following criteria when assessing eligibility for investment incentives: i) would the investment occur without incentive ii) does the investment provide economic benefit iii) does the investment substitute existing production capacity in Australia and create unfair advantage over rival projects;
  2. Other points to consider when invest in Australia include:
    • Both foreign and Australian investors are eligible for Australia investment incentives;
    • Australia’s State and Territory governments also actively court inward investment and may offer new incentives to encourage Australia business registration each year;
    • Australia has strong Intellectual Property (IP) laws in place for those planning to set up a company in Australia to develop or utilise trademarks, copyrights and patents.

Comparison of states in Australia

  • Summary table of company formation in Australian states

    Summary New South Wales Victoria Queensland Australia Capital Territory Western Australia South Australia Northern Territory
    Preferred city for incorporation of the company? Sydney Melbourne Brisbane Canberra Perth Adelaide Darwin
    Business output market size? (in AU$ billions) AU$507 AU$356 AU$300 AU$35 AU$276 AU$99 AU$22
    Market size relative to the economy? 31% 22% 19% 2% 17% 6% 1%
    Local purchasing power (GSP per capita) AU$? 66,966 60,413 63,209 89,975 107,247 58,253 92,107
    Total population? (in thousands) 7,671 5,996 4,809 393 2,604 1,703 244
    Most popular business sector? Business services Business services Business services Business services Mining Household services Natural gas
    Specific attractive Government incentives available? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Hub for the headquarters of multi-national firms? Yes Yes No No No No No
    City airport with direct flight to Europe, Asia and America? Yes Yes No No No No No
    Total foreign investment in 2015? (in AU$ trillion) 1.4 1 0.22 0.1 0.15 0.06 0.07
    Logistical considerations New South Wales Victoria Queensland Australia Capital Territory Western Australia South Australia Northern Territory
    Attractive State for a manufacturing business? Yes Yes Yes No Yes No No
    Attractive State for a e-business? Yes Yes No Yes No No No
    Attractive State for an export-oriented service business? Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes
    CBD monthly office rental per sq m? AU$108 AU$67 AU$73 AU$100 AU$65 AU$63 AU$56
    Average monthly warehouse rental per sq m? AU$60 AU$33 AU$36 AU$55 AU$33 AU$30 AU$28
    Average monthly electricity prices? (cents per Kwh) 31 31 26 27 27 36 30
    Proximity of sea port to the main city? 3km 6km 6km 288km 18km 14km 6km
    Proximity of airport in kilometres to the main city? 12km 23km 15km 7km 11km 6km 11km
    Proximity of rail in kilometres to the main city? 600m 400m 450m 6km 100m 2km 17km
    Number of international tourists? (in million) 3.6 2.5 2.4 2 0.8 0.4 0.2
    Average annual inflation rate? 0.9% 1.4% 1.5% 0.8% 0.5% 0.7% 0.1%
    Average unemployment rate? 5.2% 5.8% 6.4% 3.8% 5.7% 6.9% 4.1%
    Time zone? (ahead of GMT) +10 hours +10 hours +10 hours +10 hours +8 hours +9.30 hours +9.30 hours
    Quality of internet broadband and Wi-Fi? Excellent Excellent Good Excellent Good Satisfactory Satisfactory
    Corporate banking and finance considerations New South Wales Victoria Queensland Australia Capital Territory Western Australia South Australia Northern Territory
    Is the main city a financial services hub? Yes Yes No No No No No
    How many global banks are based in the state? 33 17 8 2 12 5 1
    How many Aussie banks with local branches? 17 15 17 16 17 17 11
    Recommended Bank for corporate banking? Westpac Bank ANZ Bank Commonwealth Bank HSBC ANZ Bank Commonwealth Bank Westpac Bank
    Quality of bank customer services? Excellent Excellent Good Good Good Good Satisfactory
    Quality of online banking services? Excellent Excellent Good Good Good Good Good
    Does the State have a reputable financial district? Yes Yes No No No No No
    Does the State have a local Stock Exchange? Yes No No No No No No
    Are there Private Equity Funds/VCs in the State? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Employment considerations New South Wales Victoria Queensland Australia Capital Territory Western Australia South Australia Northern Territory
    Average monthly salary for local employees? AU$6,678 AU$6,300 AU$6,322 AU$7,482 AU$7,371 AU$6,134 AU$6,807
    Average skilled labour monthly salary? AU$8,014 AU$7,560 AU$7,586 AU$8,978 AU$8,845 AU$7,361 AU$8,168
    Average unskilled labour monthly salary? AU$4,975 AU$4,810 AU$4,625 AU$5,237 AU$4,160 AU$4,294 AU$4,165
    Labour productivity (Value Added per hour)? AU$61 AU$59 AU$59 AU$64 AU$63 AU$57 AU$59
    Is there a large expatriate community in the State? Yes Yes No No No No No
    International schools for children of expatriate employees? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Golf courses near the main city of the State? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    General availability of bars and restaurants? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Will I find European F&B products in the supermarkets? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Mercer Survey Ranking for global cities? 10 15 36 28 21 27 Not ranked
    Is the main city of the State safe for expatriates? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Literacy rate? (% of population) 96% 96% 95% 99% 95% 96% 95%
    Computer literacy rate? (% of population) 85% 85% 80% 90% 70% 65% 65%
    Working overtime is common? Yes Yes No Yes Yes No No
    Accounting and tax considerations New South Wales Victoria Queensland Australia Capital Territory Western Australia South Australia Northern Territory
    Payroll tax rates? 5% 5% 5% 7% 6% 5% 6%
    Stamp duty rate on asset transfers of AU$500,000? 5% 6% 5% 6% 5% 5% 5%
    Land tax (over threshold) on property worth AU$500,000? 1.6% 0.2% 1.7% 4.6% 0.25% 0.5% 0%
    Monthly state tax filing required? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Business grants offered by the state government? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Specific tax incentives available in this state? Yes No No No No Yes No
    How many tax exempt free zones available? 0
    Average customs duty of export products? 5%
    Average customs duty for imported products? 5%
    Local VAT rate? 10%
    Corporation tax rate? 30%
    Withholding tax on dividends to overseas shareholders? 0%
    Total foreign investment in 2015? AU$3 trillion
    Minimum monthly wage? AU$2,915
    Average pension and insurance benefits (% of salary)? 10%
    Mandatory labour unions? No
    Minimum notice to dismiss employees? 3 weeks
    Minimum redundancy indemnity? 2 months

Healy Consultants fees and timelines for Australia company formation

Healy Consultants fees to setup Australian companies

The average fee per Australia company formation engagement is outlined in the table below. These fees include company incorporation, opening corporate bank accounts, project management and all government fees:

Different Australia entity types Cost Draft invoice
Tax resident LLC US$16,292 View invoice PDF
Branch of a foreign company US$$16,292 View invoice PDF
Representative office AU$9,660 View invoice PDF
Representative office with resident representative AU$15,570 View invoice PDF
Subsidiary LLC AU$9,807 View invoice PDF
Holding company LLC AU$9,807 View invoice PDF
Limited liability partnership AU$9,637 View invoice PDF
Nominee services for one resident director AU$6,910 View invoice PDF
Name reservation only AU$590 View invoice PDF
LLC with employment visa AU$15,757 View invoice PDF
Trading trust AU$21,076 View invoice PDF
PLC company AU$10,097 View invoice PDF
LLC without travel AU$16,697 View invoice PDF
LLC with Bitcoin bank account AU$13,097 View invoice PDF
LLC with one resident director AU$16,697 View invoice PDF
Australia shelf LLC AU$18,120 View invoice PDF
Australia AFS license AU$30,597 View invoice PDF

Timelines to setup Australian companies

The average engagement period is 3 months as outlined below:

Service LLC Trading trust LLP PLC Branch Representative Office
Engagement planning 1 week 1 week 2 weeks 3 weeks 2 weeks 2 weeks
Company incorporation period 1 week 3 weeks 1 week 2 weeks 2 weeks 2 weeks
Bank account approval 2 months 2 months 2 months 2 months 2 months 2 months
Internet banking approval 1 week 1 week 1 week 1 week 1 week 1 week
Engagement completion 1 week 1 week 1 week 2 weeks 1 week 1 week
Total engagement period 3 months 3 - 4 months 3 months 4 months 3 - 4 months 3 - 4 months

Australian company employment visa services

Along with business setup in Australia, many Clients request our assistance in applying for various work visas from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) to manage and staff their businesses in Australia. Common Australian residence visa solutions requested by our Clients include: i) business innovation and investment visa and ii) temporary skill shortage visa. If necessary, we can also assist our Clients secure short-term visas for their business visits to Australia.

Entrepreneur/ Investor visas (Business innovation and investment – 188)

Through this scheme, entrepreneurs must submit an expression of interest and be nominated by the State Government of Australia or Austrade before applying.

The various streams under this Australian work visa are:

Stream-wise key requirements:

Streams Key requirements
Business innovation
  • Must operate and manage a new or existing business in Australia;
  • Receive nomination from Australian state or territory government.
Investor
  • Designated investment of at least AU$1.5 million in an Australian state;
  • Must maintain business and investment activity in Australia;
  • Receive nomination from Australian state or territory government.
Significant Investor
  • Investors willing to invest at least AU$5 million into complying significant investments in Australia;
  • Receive nomination from Australian state or territory government.
Premium Investor
  • Investors willing to invest at least AU$15 million into complying premium investments in Australia;
  • Receive nomination from Austrade on behalf of government of Australia.
Entrepreneur
  • Funding agreement for at least AU$200,000 from registered investor or a State institution;
  • Receive nomination from Australian state or territory government.
Business Innovation Extension
  • Hold only 1 Business Innovation and Investment visa.
  • In addition to the above requirements, applicants must also meet certain i) health requirements and ii) character requirements. Some streams also require the applicants to take a points test.
  • The applicant should be prepared to present the Government with police certificates from each country they have lived in for 12 months or more during the past 10 years. This is applicable to all the members of the entrepreneur’s family irrespective of them migrating or not;
  • The visa will be valid for a period of 4 years and 3 months, after which, visa holders may apply for an Australian residence visa through the permanent (888) visa route if they meet some additional requirements. Only holders of 188 visa in business innovation and investor streams may apply for additional 2 years extensions;
  • An Entrepreneur visa application fee starts from a minimum of AU$3,755;
  • The application takes at least 16 months to process. Application can be made online after receiving a nomination by the state or Austrade;
  • Documents required include i) Expression of Interest ii) form 1139A and form 80 iii) a copy of the passport iv) a national identity card v) business documents vi) documents about relationships vii) proof of English language ability and viii) health and character certificates.

Temporary Skill Shortage visa (temporary work visa – subclass 482)

Foreign employers can apply for Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visas for their employees to hire genuinely skilled workers when they cannot appoint an appropriately skilled Australian. TSS visa is a temporary work visa in Australia and the holders can work in Australia in their nominated occupation for their approved sponsor under any one of the following categories:

  • Short-term stream: applicable to all those employers who intend to source genuine temporary overseas skilled workers in occupations mentioned in the Short-term Skilled Occupations List (STSOL) for a maximum of two years (or up to a maximum of four years if an international trade obligation applies);
  • Medium-term stream: applicable to all those employers who intend to source highly skilled overseas workers to fill medium-term critical skills in occupations listed in the Medium- and Long-Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) for up to four years, with eligibility to apply for permanent residence after three years;
  • Labour agreement stream: applicable to all those employers who intend to sponsor their employees and enter in a labour agreement with the Department.

Eligibility for TSS visa

  • General requirements for the employees (applicants):
    • Applicant must be nominated by an approved sponsoring business in Australia. To become a sponsoring business, the company must be a i) lawfully operating business; ii) demonstrate commitment to employing locals and iii) meet certain training benchmarks;
    • Applicants must pass i) an English language proficiency test ii) health examinations and iii) character requirements;
    • Applicants must meet the requirements of the stream in which they have applied;
    • Once approved, holder of a TSS visa can come to Australia and work for a business for up to 4 years. Application can be made online after being nominated by an approved sponsoring business. Usual processing time is at least 2-3 months;
    • Documents required include i) sponsorship application by the employer ii) nomination application for a skilled position by the employer and iii) visa application by the proposed employee.

Additional Stream-wise Eligibility Criteria:

  1. Short-term stream:
    • Applicant should have worked in their nominated occupation, or related field for at least two years;
    • The applicant should be a genuine applicant for entry and stay as a short-term visa holder only;
    • The applicant should be solely working for the sponsor or any associated entity of the sponsor, unless the nominated occupation is exempt from this requirement.
  2. Medium-term stream:
    • Applicant should have worked in their nominated occupation, or related field for at least two years;
    • The applicant should be solely working for the sponsor or any associated entity of the sponsor, unless the nominated occupation is exempt from this requirement.
  3. Labour agreement stream:
    • The applicant should be nominated in an occupation included in the labour agreement that the employer has entered with the Australian government;
    • Applicant should have worked in their nominated occupation, or related field for at least two years.

Steps to obtain an Australia Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa

Healy Consultants Group will be pleased to assist our Clients i) register their company in Australia ii) open a corporate bank account and iii) obtain a residency permit on their behalf and/or for their foreign employees.

  1. Healy Consultants Group will i) legally register Australian company ii) open corporate bank account and iii) secure business licenses.
  2. Healy Consultants Group will assist Clients application to be in the format of a standard business sponsor by preparing i) detailed business plan, ii) an auditable plan and iii) financials to demonstrate the following:
    • The business is a lawfully operating business;
    • It ensures employment of local employees;
    • The business’s ability to reach training benchmarks.
  3. Upon approval, Healy Consultants Group will submit a quality visa application together with supporting documents directly to DIBP or through the local Australian Embassy. The processing time of the visa usually takes at least 2-3 months. During this period, our Client must pass the relevant proficiency assessment;
  4. The TSS working visa application cost for Australia starts from a minimum of AU$1,634;
  5. Following approval of visa application, the Client will be requested to visit their local Australian Embassy to collect their Australian residence visa;
  6. Healy Consultants Group will assist Clients apply the same for their foreign employees, if required.

NOTE: On 18 April 2017, the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa of Australia (subclass 457) was declared to be abolished and replaced with the new immigration policy of Temporary Skill Shortage visa to address genuine skill shortages in Australian businesses.

Short term business visit visas (visitor – 600)

The Subclass 600 allows our Clients to opt for an Australian working holiday visa for a short period of time for the purpose of business. For short term visit visas to Australia, our Clients may consider the following:

  • It can be issued for a period of either 3 months, 6 months or 12 months. The processing time may take up to one month depending upon the length of required stay in Australia;
  • Documents required include a valid passport and a copy of the applicant’s return ticket;
  • Passport holder of countries such as i) UK ii) Germany iii) France and iv) Spain are also eligible for a free 3 month e-Visitor (651) visa for tourism and business.

Further, you can visit the Australian Government’s Department of Home Affairs webpage for a detailed insight into all available visa listings.

Australia company formation services – videos

Australia company formation services – case studies

  • Spain headquartered educational experience platform engages Healy Consultants for support services in Australia and New Zealand

    Background

    • Our Client, a Valencia based online platform that helps mainly Spanish and Latin American individuals who want to study English, work, undertake a volunteer or just live during a period of time in an English speaking country.
    • The Firm has international subsidiaries in Canada, Ireland, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand and approached Healy Consultants Group for assistance in replacing and providing a resident director in the latter 2 countries.

    Engagement planning

    • Kunal being Spanish himself connected with this Client and advised our Firm could also provide legal and tax compliance for both Australia and New Zealand if required.
    • The contact person connected the CFO and Kunal over a video conference call to further discuss the level of support Healy Consultants Group could specifically provide in Australia as their current Australian accountant was an acquaintance of the outgoing resident director and the Firm was concerned of any negative influence that could affect the Australian entity.
    • Our Client and Kunal agreed the services required in Australia would include i) resident directorship ii) quarterly BAS filings iii) annual audit relief exemption and iv) one time review of current bookkeeping. For New Zealand, our Client would only engage us for resident director services.
    • Since this was the first engagement with Healy Consultants Group, Kunal and our Client agreed engagement fees to be settled in 2 equal instalments – the first payment upfront and the second payment within 6 months.

    Director appointments

    • Prior to proceeding with director replacement, Kunal shared a draft of Healy Consultants Group Australia director agreement to ensure our Client is transparently informed of the terms and conditions of the appointment and we are all aligned.
    • While the agreement was being finalized, Kunal received the requested due diligence documentation from our Client including the outgoing director of the Australia and NZ entities, and the current directors and shareholders of the Spanish parent company.
    • Likewise, Kunal also shared the KYC documentation of our Australian associate who would be taking on both Australia and NZ directorships of our Clients companies so they could conduct internal and independent background checks.
    • Once both parties were satisfied with their KYC checks the nominee agreement was signed. Kunal immediately enlisted our colleague Ms. Grace Odhiambo, who is the expert at Australian company secretarial and business setup support work, to prepare the requisite documentation for director replacements, including draft resolutions and ASIC forms.
    • Within 2 days following receipt of all requisite documentation, Grace completed the Australian director replacement and emailed our Client the updated ASIC company extract.
    • For NZ, on the other hand, our Client connected their NZ registered agent and accountant with Grace to exchange relevant documentation so she could directly make the necessary changes with the New Zealand Companies Registrar.

    Accounting and tax and additional services

    • Following completion of director replacements, Kunal introduced our accounting and tax director, Nik and his team to our Client so they could mutually agree the accounting deliverables, timeframes and important deadlines.
    • From there onward, Nik and his department continue liaising with our Client to ensure timely completion of agreed deliverables.

    Additional support services

    • A few weeks after engaging Healy Consultants, our Client reverted to Kunal requesting support with updating the NZ and Australian corporate documents as the Firm was change its internal group structure and wanted to appoint a new corporate shareholder.
    • Kunal and our Client agreed additional fees and Grace project managed the corporate structure changes including preparation of share transfer agreements, board resolutions and ASIC forms.
  • Setting up an Australia LLC for software development and consultancy

    Background

    In January 2021 our Client, a Malaysia-based company, approached Healy Consultants Group to assist with setting up an Australia LLC for a software development and consultancy.

    Our Client provided all the due diligence documents required for company registration, signed the engagement letter and paid the first installment of our fees.

    Engagement planning

    Company incorporation

    • Our Client signed and email returned the registration documents, and we submitted the full application package to ASIC to proceed with company registration.
    • Three days thereafter, Healy Consultants Group obtained the Certificate of Incorporation, constitution and company extract documents.
    • Healy Consultants Group then submitted complete applications to Australia Business Registry and Australia Tax Office for registration of Tax File Number, Goods and Services Tax and Australia Business Number.
    • Within one month of submission of the documents, we received the above registration numbers.

    Post-company incorporation

    • Healy Consultants Group approached multiple banks in Australia to open a corporate bank account for the newly-registered Australia LLC.
    • We received confirmation of interest from several banks and pre-filled the account opening forms for our Client to sign.
    • Healy Consultants Group submitted the complete account opening package to our Client’s preferred banks.
    • Unfortunately, most Australia banks required our Client to physically visit a branch in Australia to complete the KYC process. However, one of the banks accepted the application and requested notarised KYC documents from the Client.
    • Our Client couriered the requested notarised KYC to the bank, and within six weeks, the account was opened.
    • Our Client was then required to call the Australian bank for internet banking activation which was completed during the call.
    • Our Client could now sign contracts, issue invoices, receive funds and pay suppliers through their newly-opened corporate bank account.
    • Our Client asked Healy Consultants Group to timely accurately and completely discharge their monthly and quarterly and annual legal, accounting, audit and tax obligations.
    • Healy Consultants Group asked our Client for a professional reference.
  • Accounting and tax services for an Australian company

    Background

    • Company ‘A’ was incorporated in Australia in 2014. The company provides security analysis for its customers.
    • The company’s main product is a Security Operations Center (SOC) subscription service that logs, monitors and analyses the organisation’s security events.

    Accounting and tax obligations

    • Once we received payment from the Client, we sent a detailed email including an overview of the project plan and requesting the documents required to complete the accounting and tax obligations.
    • As the company is a small proprietary company controlled by a foreign company, Healy Consultants assisted our Client to obtain audit relief from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).
    • Healy Consultants prepared and supplied the Client with i) director’s resolution and ii) Form 384 for signature and return to us.
    • Our accounting team lodged the above documents with the ASIC.
    • After the Client supplied us all the required documents such as trial balance, bank statements and sales invoices issued during the accounting period, Healy Consultants Group’s accounting team prepared the draft financial statement for our Client’s review.
    • Our team settled the ASIC fee once they received the ASIC annual statement.
    • Healy Consultants obtained the Client’s approval and signature on the financial statement.
    • Healy Consultants’ accounting team lodged the signed financial statement with ASIC and completed the corporate tax return filing with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

    Engagement completion

    • Once the above was completed, Healy Consultants accounting team sent a summary of obligation to the Client including i) signed financial statement ii) ASIC annual payment and iii) lodged tax return form for their acknowledgment.
  • Australia company formation services

    Background

    • In November 2019 our Client approached Healy Consultants Group to enquire about securing an Australian work visa for a foreign employee based outside the country. Initially, we were engaged to source multiple quality Australian immigration lawyers, and present our findings on the optimum visa strategy to our Client.
    • Based on our findings, our Client decided the best option would be to first set up an Australian company, and then apply for the visa.
    • In July 2020, the Client settled Healy Consultants Group’s engagement fees to efficiently and effectively complete Australia company registration and secure the work visa for the employee.
    • In addition to our company incorporation services, the Client also required our Firm to supply an Australia resident director as well as a Public Officer to take care of the company’s statutory obligations.
    • Later in the engagement, our Client requested us to assist with the opening or an Australia corporate bank account.
    • Our Client Relationship Officer Alvin Fan was assigned to project manage the engagement.

    Engagement planning

    • Healy Consultants Group provided our Client with a detailed project plan outlining i) the engagement process ii) expected timelines and iii) foreseeable challenges during the engagement. This was done to ensure that there would be no unexpected or unwelcome surprises for our Client during the engagement.
    • Our team sent i) Australia company incorporation documents ii) an Ultimate Beneficial Owner (UBO) declaration iii) Australia nominee director agreement and iv) virtual office agreement to our Client for review and e-signature via HelloSign.

    Australia company registration

    • Our Client’s Australian company was incorporated in July 2020 following submission of all required documents to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). We e-mailed the Certificate of Incorporation to our Client.
    • Our Australia team also applied for ABN, TFN and GST numbers from both ASIC and the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), and these were secured by 20 October 2020.

    Corporate bank account opening

    • In late August, our Client approached our team for assistance in opening an Australian multicurrency corporate bank account for the newly-incorporated company.
    • To achieve this, Alvin and the team prepared a quality business plan for the bank. This detailed expected funds inflows and outflows for the first 12 months of operation.
    • Alvin contacted several Australian banks with the aim of securing written confirmation that they would welcome a formal account opening application from our Client’s business.
    • Several banks rejected Alvin’s approaches. One bank required the business to have a minimum annual turnover of A$50 million in order to be considered for onboarding. Another confirmed that, due to security and compliance reasons, they were unable to verify new Clients based overseas.
    • However, eventually Alvin sourced a quality, leading bank prepared to onboard our Client’s business. Having submitted the application/business plan to the bank on 21 September, the bank confirmed that the account had been opened on 10 November.

    Meeting statutory obligations

    • In addition to incorporating the company and opening a corporate bank account, our Client engaged Healy Consultants Group to supply the legal Australia resident director and public officer, to fulfil Australian corporate statutory requirements.
    • Our annual responsibilities, as agreed with the Client, include i) preparation and filing of the legal Annual Return ii) securely maintain company records and chop; iii) liaising with the Australia Government on behalf of our Client and iv) legal filing of changes of company structure; and v) reminding our Client of statutory deadlines.

    Australia work visa

    • To date, our Client has not progressed the Australian visa application for their foreign employee. We expect this to be done in 2021.

    Quotation for future services

    • In September 2020, our Client requested a quotation for i) annual renewal fees for the Australian company and ii) monthly book-keeping services.

    Engagement completion

    • On 25 November 2020, Healy Consultants Group formally completed the engagement.
    • Throughout the engagement Healy Consultants Group supplied weekly detailed engagement status updates for our Client.
    • We look forward to assisting with the Australia work visa application sometime in 2021.
  • US-listed company expands into Asia Pacific

    Background

    • In 2019, Healy Consultants Group advised our Client, a USA-listed company, about their expansion plans into the Asia Pacific region.
    • One of the countries considered for expansion was Australia. Fortunately, Australia company setup is straightforward and fully open to foreign investment. The only requirement is to appoint a resident director. Most of our Clients therefore also engage Healy Consultants Group to supply them with passive professional nominee director services, in order to meet this legal requirement.
    • To simplify business setup, we recommended our Client register a proprietary company with an individual director and shareholder.
    • In early June 2020, our Client agreed with above recommendations and settled Healy Consultants Group’s engagement fees for this setup.

    Engagement planning

    • Our team provided a detailed project plan outlining i) engagement process ii) expected timelines and iii) foreseeable challenges and solutions during the Australian engagement.
    • We also supplied a draft business plan, for our Client’s review and approval, to ensure we were on the same page regarding the purpose of the new Australian company, and its future banking transactions.

    Australia company registration

    • The registration of the Australian entity took less than one week, requiring only the e-signature of the incorporation forms by the shareholder and foreign director.
    • After registration of the entity with the Australia Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), we provided a Certificate of Incorporation and other corporate documents to our Client.
    • Tax registration in Australia is, however, slower than company incorporation. This is due to the requirement to supply some original notarised copies to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). The process took around one month, mainly because our Client faced some issues in meeting a notary, as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

    Corporate bank account opening

    • As agreed with our Client, we approached the Australian branch of a top-tier USA bank, with which our Client maintained an existing relationship.
    • After a few phone calls between our Singapore office and the Singapore and Australian branches of the bank, the latter confirmed they welcomed a formal application from the new Australian proprietary company.
    • In line with our “no travel” strategy, the corporate bank account was secured with this bank without the bank signatories having to travel to Australia. Thanks to our Client’s pre-existing relationship, the bank also agreed for all forms to be signed electronically! No wet signature required.
    • Our Client received online tokens and passwords and integrated the bank account with their existing banking systems. From that date onwards, our Client was able to use online banking to complete transactions with their suppliers, customers and free lancers in Australia.

    Engagement completion

    • See this page for more information on important considerations for Australia company setup.
  • An Indian remittance company branches out in Australia

    Background

    Appoint a nominee director and shareholder for an Australian companyOur Client is a money remittance firm registered in India. The company operates an online portal which is used by the expatriate population in several countries including USA, Canada, Britain, Germany and Singapore to remit money to India and Philippines.

    In Australia, our Client planned to setup a subsidiary to offer similar services to the Indian expatriate population, who are the largest source of permanent migration to the country. Furthermore, our Client planned to benefit from the business friendly environment in Australia. In order to fulfill these objectives, the company directors approached Healy Consultants.

    Engagement planning

    The initial conversations between Healy Consultants and our Client took place over the phone. Our Client pointed out they wanted to register a money remittance company in Australia. Healy Consultants realized the complexity of this engagement as money remittance companies face additional scrutiny from the Australian Government due to money laundering and terrorism financing concerns. However, given our prior experience with such projects, Healy Consultants assured our Client we could assist his firm and immediately forwarded the Client engagement letter.

    Company incorporation

    With the company name and corporate structure agreed, Healy Consultants proceeded to reserve the name with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC). Next, Healy Consultants proceeded to incorporate the company by submitting all the requisite documents to ASIC. After receiving the Certificate of Incorporation, Healy Consultants scanned the same and emailed it to the Client.

    Corporate banking

    With the company registered, Healy Consultants proceeded to open the corporate bank account with a respected bank in Australia. First, Healy Consultants skillfully negotiated a travel exemption for our Client, because of which our Clients were not required to travel to Australia. Instead, our Clients simply traveled to the bank’s branch in their home city of Mumbai to sign the corporate bank account opening forms. The entire corporate bank account opening process was completed within 6 weeks.

    Thereafter, Healy Consultants applied for internet banking services, after which the bank tokens were independently couriered to the Clients in India.

    Engagement strategy document

    Next, our Client requested Healy Consultants to prepare an engagement strategy document to address several issues including i) license requirements for operating money remittance business ii) HR and office space requirements and iii) taxation and compliance obligations. Healy Consultants contacted over 50 law firms, company secretarial firms and accounting firms; and based on consensus feedback prepared this document within 1.5 months.

    Austrac registration

    Next, Healy Consultants proceeded to register our Client’s Australian subsidiary as a “money remittance company” with the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC). For this purpose, Healy Consultants assisted our Client with i) appointing an AML/CTF officer and ii) preparing an AML/CTF program. Thereafter, Healy Consultants submitted a formal proposal to the authorities for their approval.

    Virtual office services

    Additionally, our Client engaged Healy Consultants to use our Australian virtual office service for their company. This move has enabled our Client to more effectively operate their business in Australia.

  • Singaporean hotel developer enters Australian market

    Background

    Our Client FC, a Singaporean citizen, owns a portfolio of property assets in Thailand, the Philippines and Malaysia, including small resort developments, apartments and luxury villas. He wanted to expand this portfolio by investing in Australia, a market which he believes offers excellent long-term prospects. Australia’s Tourism Forecasting Committee, for example, estimates that the country will require some 10,000 extra hotel rooms.

    Engagement planning

    FC’s initial objective was to purchase a small hotel in Perth, Western Australia, a city he knows well because he has family and business associates living there. Healy Consultants had already assisted him with a residential property purchase in southern Thailand, and the efficient outcome of this had prompted him to contact us for assistance with his latest endeavour.

    FC had identified a small hotel for sale in the eastern suburbs of Perth, close to the river, but since he was busy pursuing other business interests in Asia he required Healy Consultants’ assistance with completing the purchase, obtaining financing and advice on minimising his tax liabilities as a foreign investor.

    Purchasing property

    His case was referred initially to our Perth office, which provides strategic consulting services for entrepreneurs investing in Australia, including liasing with government bodies to obtain foreign investment approval.

    With this in mind, our Perth office approached Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB), with a view to obtaining approval for the hotel purchase – since FC is neither an Australian citizen nor resident. The FIRB referred our staff to its ‘Singapore Help Desk’, whose task is to assist Singaporean investors with direct investment applications in Australia.

    The Singapore Help Desk e-mailed a foreign investment application form, which our staff completed on FC’s behalf. In addition, they prepared the FIRB’s standard Proposed Purchase document, which provides a full description of the property, including number of rooms, features and facilities, and the current use of property.

    Jainey, our Client Relationship Officer in Perth, submitted these documents by courier to the FIRB near Canberra, and followed up with a telephone call two days later to confirm that they had been received. Jainey was advised that the approval time would be approximately three to four weeks.

    As expected, the FIRB gave written approval Jainey within four weeks, and she communicated this to FC in Singapore. He was especially relieved because he did not wish to delay the process of making a formal offer for the property.

    With this objective achieved, Healy Consultants commissioned a commercial inspection of the property through Archicentre, to enable FC to make an informed decision before making an offer. As well as providing peace of mind for the investor prior to purchase, a survey is also normally required by finance lenders, and so FC had requested that our staff include this step in the plan.

    Mortgage acquisition

    At this stage, Healy Consultants’ solicitor became involved in the project. FC had made a written formal offer for the property, which had been accepted by the vendor. FC was then required to lodge a 10% deposit with the solicitor to secure the property, which Healy Consultants did on his behalf. Our team forwarded the receipt from the solicitor directly to FC.

    With this step complete, our solicitor began the conveyance process, drawing up the Contract of Sale. Once this had been drafted, the contract was couriered to FC in Singapore for his perusal, approval and signature, which, being in good order, was returned to our Perth office within one week.

    The next phase of the engagement was for Healy Consultants’ staff to source a suitable lender for the purchase. Our recommendation to FC was to obtain a Singapore dollar mortgage from a Singapore-based bank. However, to ensure we explored all options, representatives from three large banks visited our Perth office to present their Australian dollar mortgage products, and this enabled Jainey to draw up a detailed comparison table and recommendation for FC’s review, which he received by e-mail.

    At the same time, the Banking Team in our Singapore office also approached three Singapore-based banks with a view to securing a Singapore dollar mortgage for FC. At this stage, it became clear that the Singapore dollar mortgage was a preferable solution for FC’s requirements.

    Within one week, FC had decided to proceed with the Singapore dollar mortgage offer from a renowned APAC bank in Singapore, which was able to offer an interest rate of just 3.9% against 6.9% for the Australian dollar mortgage. Upon FC’s instructions, our Singapore Banking Team began to prepare the Singapore dollar mortgage application documents on his behalf.

    Accounting and tax support

    Obtaining a property investment bank loan can be challenging, and the bank required a detailed Business Plan describing the hotel facilities and why FC required financing. Healy Consultants’ Marketing and Media Department therefore prepared a detailed Business Plan, providing information on the property type, its location, financial projections, as well as an analysis of hospitality market conditions in Perth.

    The Singapore dollar loan was approved in three weeks, our Singapore Banking Team couriered a complete approval pack to FC. With financing in place, Healy Consultants’ solicitors arranged for exchange of contract on FC’s behalf.

    To complete this phase of the project, Healy Consultants’ Australia Accounting Team registered FC for goods and services tax (GST) and paid stamp duty to the Australian Tax Office (ATO).

    The principal challenge for an engagement of this type is to efficiently manage the many disbursements, including legal fees, stamp duty, mortgage application fees, insurance and rates, council taxes and utilities. FC was grateful that he was not required to visit Perth during the whole process due to business commitments in China, but was able to remit via Internet the necessary funds to cover costs when required.

    Other Services

    The hotel property is now ready for occupation. To coincide with the opening, Healy Consultants has been engaged to design and develop a website for the property, which will be delivered to the Client on budget and schedule.

  • ICT consultant sets up Australian LLC

    Background

    David Wilson is an Australian IT expert who has worked in the telecommunications and IT sector in Australia for the last 10 years. He worked for a large internet communications technology (ICT) provider in Melbourne, and had gained an in-depth knowledge of project management and finances in his role there. With this experience under his belt, David wanted to strike out on his own and set up his own ICT consulting business, devising ICT strategies for Clients, managing ICT projects and building databases. The Australian ICT sector is a rapidly expanding area, but faces an acute shortage of qualified experts to meet demand, and Mr Wilson hoped to tap into this demand imbalance and build his business accordingly.

    Engagement planning

    David first contacted Healy Consultants to find out how we could help him with his endeavour. Our business startup services are as varied as our Client’s needs, and David was especially interested in utilising our marketing expertise to drive his company forward once it had been incorporated. The first step was for Healy Consultants to prepare a detailed cost proposal, covering company incorporation, assistance to open an Australian corporate bank account, and marketing support, including copywriting press releases and designing, developing and optimising a business website. David also expressed an interest in our tax and accounting support, especially with respect to filing tax returns and preparing audited financial statements, which are statutory obligations under Australian company law.

    Company incorporation

    With engagement costs agreed, David settled our invoice and also provided due diligence as outlined in the Client Engagement Letter. David also explained his required corporate structure – he would act as the Australia-resident director and shareholder for the private limited company, while Healy Consultants would fulfill the statutory requirement for a resident company secretary. With this agreed, Healy Consultants began preparing the application documents required by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) for incorporation, including proposed company name, registered office details, director and secretary details and share structure details. These documents were then submitted to the ASIC for processing. The following day, Healy Consultants received a Certificate of Registration for the company and an Australian Company Number. Upon receipt, Healy Consultants e-mailed copies of these documents to David for his reference, along with a printout from the Australian Business Register.

    Corporate banking

    The next task was to open a corporate bank account for the new company. Opening a corporate bank account in Australia is challenging, since banks require a lot of information on signatories and the company before an application is considered. With this in mind, Healy Consultants prepared a detailed business plan for David’s company, providing comprehensive information on its activities, products and services, as well as its Clients and suppliers. The plan also included information on the bank signatories, an analysis of the ICT market in Australia as well as some financial projections for the first three years of operation. Along with a completed corporate bank account application form, Healy Consultants couriered the business plan to David for his signature and return to us. Once this was received, Healy Consultants prepared a detailed bank application, including the application form, business plan and corporate and personal due diligence on the signatories. This was then submitted to the bank. Bank account approval was received within three weeks by Healy Consultants along with separate packages containing a corporate cheque book along with credit and ATM cards. These items were then sent to David in separate postings.

    Accounting and tax support

    The next step was to register David’s company for goods and services tax (GST). An Australian company is required to register for GST if its turnover exceeds A$50,000 (US$45,000), a level which David expected to easily surpass. Healy Consultants filed an application to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) to register the company for GST, which was completed on the same day.

    Healy Consultants’ final task in the engagement to date was to initiate a marketing campaign for David’s company. Our first role in this was to build a business website based on brief content supplied by David (which he had supplied for his bank account business plan). Healy Consultants’ copywriters elaborated on the content, while the website design team built the template according to David’s rough design guidelines and specifications. At the same time, Healy Consultants’ marketing staff also prepared press releases and advertorial copy which was supplied to IT and ICT trade magazines in Australia, to accompany a print advertising campaign. Press releases announcing the company’s launch were also sent to press release agencies on David’s behalf, thereby maximising exposure. The website was launched shortly after the print media campaign, and our web designers had optimised the pages to ensure it was compatible to the leading search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN.

    David’s business is growing steadily, and he has Clients both in Victoria and New South Wales. He has requested Healy Consultants’ assistance to prepare financial statements and a tax return at the end of the financial year, in line with statutory requirements.

  • Australian subsidiary of biomedical enterprises

    Healy Consultants Group was engaged by an existing client to assist them with their Australian subsidiary deregistration (click link). The client settled the deregistration fee in February 2021.

    This deregistration fee includes the services for i) annual nominee director service, ii) Australian Securities Investment Commission (ASIC) annual review fee, iii) annual company secretary and registered office service and iv) annual corporate income tax filing with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) v) Quarterly Business Activity Statement (BAS) filing and vi) audited financial statements fee.

    Engagement planning

    • Healy Consultants Group emailed our client an engagement summary, outlining i) documents required to move forward ii) the weekly and monthly deliverables and iii) timeline to complete the engagement.
    • To proceed with the deregistration, the entity is required to complete all filings and payment obligations with ASIC and ATO before submitting the deregistration application.
    • The financial year-end of the Australian subsidiary is 30 June. Therefore, the company has to meet the following deadlines.
      Filings Due Date
      Audit relief application 30 October
      Financial statement lodgment 30 October
      Corporate income tax return 16 May
      BAS Mar’21 28 April
      BAS June’21 28 July

    • As the Australian subsidiary did not file audit relief application (Form 384) for Financial Year End 2020 before the due date which 30 October 2020, the subsidiary was required to prepare and lodge an audited financial statement with ASIC within 4 months from the financial year-end.

    Deregistration

    • Healy Consultants prepared the draft financial statement for the Financial Year End 2020 and 2021 immediately once we received the bank statements.
    • The draft financial statements were sent to the Client for their review and approval after a quality review by Healy Consultants Group management.
    • Immediately after securing the Client’s signature, our auditor commenced the audit.
    • In March 2021, the Australian subsidiary was required to settle the ASIC annual review fee for 2021. Healy Consultants assisted the Client to settle these fees with ASIC.
    • Following that, our team prepared the BAS for March 2021 quarter, obtained the Client’s signature and lodged the same with ATO.
    • Thereafter, and once the auditor finalised the audit, our team sent the draft audited financial statement to the Client for their review and signature.
    • Immediately after securing the Client’s signature on the audited financial statement, our team lodged the documents with ASIC.
    • Our team supplied the draft tax return form for 2020 and 2021 (final return) for the Client’s review and approval.
    • Once the Client approved the filing, our team lodged the same with the ATO.
    • Thereafter Healy Consultants Group sent the acknowledgement of filing to the Client for their reference.
    • In July 2021, our team prepared the BAS for June 2021 quarter, obtained the Client’s signature and lodged the same with ATO.
    • Once all the outstanding obligations were completed, our team settled the deregistration fee of AU$42 and lodged Form 6010 (strike-off application) with ASIC.
    • In October 2021, ASIC issued a notice to confirm that the deregistration application had been accepted.
    • In December 2021, the company was struck off from the registrar.

    Engagement completion

    • Once all of the above was completed, Healy Consultants’ accounting team sent a summary of obligation to the Client, including the i) audited financial statements ii) ASIC annual review payment slip iii) acknowledgement of BAS and tax return filing iv) filed deregistration application and v) renewal paid invoice.
    • Thereafter, our IT department collected a professional reference from the Client.

Australia company formation – frequently asked questions

  • What is the difference between ABN and ACN?

    An Australian Company Number (ACN), is issued only to businesses that wish to register as a limited company. It is a 9-digit number that is issued by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and is an identifier for ASIC to monitor the company’s activities. It confirms to the public that they are dealing with a limited company.

    An Australian Business Number (ABN) is a unique 11-digit number given to any entity that is undertaking any form of business in Australia. It is issued by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and its basic function is to allow the government to keep track of your business activity and taxes. It also works as an identifier for other businesses that you may work with.

    A company’s ABN will include its ACN followed by two additional digits.

  • What are the differences between trading name, business name and company name in Australia?

    A company name is the official registered name of the business and is required to include the legal terms or abbreviations ‘pty’ and/or ‘ltd’ at the end.

    A business name helps customers find, identify and connect with your business. Legal entities must register a business name when they want to trade under a different name from their legal entity (company) name.

    A trading name is an unregistered name that businesses used before the introduction of the National Business Names Register in 2012. It is not am officially registered business name. Trading names will be displayed on the Australian Business Register (ABR) till 31 October 2018 for businesses to decide whether to register them.

  • What are the different entity types in Australia?

    There are four main types of business entities recognized in Australia. Below is a summary of each of them:

    • Sole trading

      Ideal for individuals who wish to trade legally on their own, a sole trading firm is a great option for small businesses. The entity is easier to handle, had less legal and accounting requirements, but makes the trader fully liable.

    • Company

      A company can either be proprietary or public. It is a separate entity from the founders and members and liability is limited by a share capital.

    • Partnership

      A partnership is a small group of people (no more than 20) who work together and distribute the common revenues between themselves.

    • Trust

      A trust’s profit is given to beneficiaries. The trust appoints a trustee to manage assets, conduct business and distribute profits to beneficiaries according to the trust deed. The trustee is liable before the law.

  • What is a foreign controlled Australian entity?

    Any Australian company, partnership, or trust in which foreign individuals or companies hold a thin capitalisation control interest or a direct control interest is a foreign controlled Australian entity.

  • Who is a public officer?

    A public officer is a company’s representative to the ATO and is responsible for the company’s obligations under Section 252 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936. The public officer is responsible for the company complying with the Act and is also liable for the same penalties as the company, in case of any violations.

  • What are the requirements to hire staff? When can I hire a foreign staff?

    • Before hiring a new employee make sure that you know about your responsibilities under the Fair Work Act 2009;
    • Employees must be paid at least the minimum wage provided in their award or agreement. If they aren’t covered by an award or agreement, they must be paid at least the national minimum wage. Currently, the Australian minimum wage amounts to AU$18.93 per hour, since July 2018;
    • Employers need to meet tax obligations for all workers;
    • As an employer, you are responsible for providing a healthy and safe working environment for your employees. You also need to pay worker’s compensation insurance for your employees.
    • You need to keep written time and wage records for each employee for at least seven years;
    • Any discrimination in the workplace is illegal;
  • What are the legal requirements for Australia company registration?

    The main legal requirements to register an Australian company are as per below:

    • A business name;
    • A business name;
    • A resident director;
    • A company secretary;
    • A company constitution;
    • Share allotment structure;
    • A registered business office address.

    According to the Corporations Act, the legal obligations also include ensuring company details are kept up to date, maintaining company records and details on the register, and paying the appropriate lodgement fees and annual review fees as required.

  • How long does the whole company creation process take?

    The complete process of registering a business in Australia takes approximately a week to complete, once the i) corporate structure is confirmed and ii) all incorporation documents are prepared and signed and legalized if necessary.

  • Can an Australian company have foreign shareholders?

    Yes, the Corporations Act of 2001 allows 100% foreign ownership.

  • What is company constitution and when do I need one?

    The constitution of a company is a special type of statutory contract between the company, its members, the directors and the secretary. The constitution sets out the various rights of the members and directors, rules relating to the transfer of shares, provisions concerning members’ and directors’ meetings and rules by which the company is to be internally governed. You need a constitution if you are setting up a public company or a proprietary company.

  • Can an Australia company conduct international business?

    A properly structured Australia private limited company is an excellent corporate vehicle through which business in Australia, and internationally, can be conducted.

  • What makes Australia a good base for international companies?

    An Australia company projects an excellent image to your customers, suppliers and potential investors. Australia also permits 100% foreign ownership. In addition, Australia is considered one of the easiest places in the world to do business.

  • What are the tax incentives associated with incorporating a company in Australia?

    If income and capital gains have already been taxed in a foreign jurisdiction, then exemptions are available.
  • What are the negative tax implications of an Australia business?

    Australia resident company must pay income and capital gains tax on worldwide-sourced income. The Australia corporate tax rate is 30%.
  • What is the definition of an Australia resident company?

    A business is deemed to be Australia resident company if it has been formed in Australia; if the company’s central management and administration is in Australia, even if it was formed in another jurisdiction; and if the company conducts business in Australia and its voting control is in the hands of resident Australian shareholders, even though it was incorporated in another jurisdiction or its central management is in another jurisdiction.
  • Do non-resident companies enjoy and tax benefits?

    Non-resident companies are taxed only on Australian-sourced income and capital gains on the disposal of certain taxable Australian assets if acquired on or after 20 September 1985. (Capital gains on assets acquired before that date by non-resident entities are usually received free of Capital Gains Tax).
  • How easy is it to open a corporate bank account for an Australia business?

    It is easy to open an international corporate bank account.
  • Are there any non-tax incentives available to investors planning to set up in Australia?

    The Australian government provides incentives on a case-by-case basis. Incentives include assistance in training, research & development (R&D) and export market development; streamlined immigration procedures; assistance with obtaining information for site selection and introductions to relevant government agencies and professional service providers.
  • What are the criteria to be eligible for incentives?

    According to the government-run agency InvestAustralia, the Federal government provides incentives if it considers that a project offers significant economic benefits to the country.
  • Does an Australia business need to prepare and submit annual accounts?

    An Australia company must submit annual accounts, tax return and undergo an audit.
  • How many directors must an Australian company have?

    Only one director is required.
  • Does an Australian company need a resident director?

    To comply with Australian corporations law, at least one company director must be resident in Australia.
  • Are there any minimum capital requirements to set up an Australian company?

    There are no minimum capital requirements.
  • What is the minimum number of shareholders required?

    There is a public register of shareholders, directors and beneficial owners of every Australian company.
Social Media content writer questionnaire

To help increase our brand awareness and credibility, Healy Consultants Group publishes quality content on our own Blog, Social Media channels and also on Quora.

We are looking for quality professional content writers for the above channels. If you are interested in working with Healy Consultants Group, please complete the 5-minute questionnaire below. Within a week, our Marketing Department will email revert to you with follow up questions and finally with a draft partnership agreement.







    • How can you help us?

      Do you have experience writing for a company in Healy Consultants Group ’s specific industry (corporate services related to business, banking, legal)?