The first thing that you need to establish when starting your business in Australia is the type of business structure that you are going to adopt. Whether you decide to operate as a sole trader, a partnership, a private or a public company it is best to have a good understanding of your aims before starting business. If you decide on the wrong structure from the outset then there can be tax implications later on when you need to put things right. We would suggest consulting a local accountant or lawyer before starting.
If you are an overseas individual or an overseas entity and you are looking to set up operations in Australia then you need to ensure that you comply with Australian requirements. The best place to find out what these requirements are is the Australian Securities and Investments Commision (ASIC). Their website has a good list of what the requirements are for foreign investors and the process that you have to go through. We would suggest checking out the ASIC site before you do anything else.
Starting or Buying A Company
Once you have your structure and foreign ownership requirements under control you need to consider how to enter the Australian market. If you already have a successful operation offshore and you are simply looking to replicate that business model in Australia then it may make sense to have a start up. A start up may take more time and effort to get established. Alternatively, if you are looking to get things moving quickly then it may be an idea to buy an existing business. Talk to your accountant or lawyer about ways to buy an existing business.
PAYG, GST, State and Federal Taxes
In Australia there are a variety of State and Federal taxes that you will need to be aware of and that may be applicable to your business. You will need to pay PAYG for your employees and potentially your business if you are making money. Unless you are in an exempt area you will need to charge GST for your products and services plus dependant upon which state you are in you may need to pay things like stamp duty or payroll tax. To find out more about taxes that you may be up for talk to your Australian accountant or check out the ATO website.
Why Not Go Virtual
Getting a physical address for your new Australian venture can be a costly exercise. Not only do you need to fly across to meet with real estate agents and inspect properties but you also need to outlay a whole heap of money for deposits, bonds and office furniture. A cheaper and quicker way to get an Australian presence is to get yourself a virtual address in a prestigious Australian office building. Virtual Reception can set you up in a premium virtual address in one of Australia's CBD's for a very affordable fee. Contact our friendly sales team on 1300 893 820 to find out more.