News Pulse for December 15, 2016

A daily download of SME, startup, fintech and tax news from around Australia.

Sydney ranks fifth for Airbnb user numbers around the world

Sydney has placed fifth in the global rankings of Airbnb users, at a time when more than 18 per cent of all Australian adults hold an account with the homestay network.Behind only Paris, London, New York and Los Angeles in terms of user numbers, Sydney’s Airbnb market has continued to grow, with more than 80 per cent of Sydney listings from homeowners offering their primary dwelling.

ATO sorry after critical online systems crash for over two days

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO Australian Taxation Office) has apologised for a serious problem with its technology which saw critical systems go offline for more than two days.The ATO Australian Taxation Office’s data storage systems crashed on Monday, taking down the agency’s website, tax agent portal and case management system.

The ATO Australian Taxation Office’s data storage systems crashed on Monday, taking down the agency’s website, tax agent portal and case management system.

Startups with killer customer service are creating a serious problem for big business

Uber, Xero, Netflix and Atlassian have all grown from startups to industry heavyweights because they share many attributes, including being major disruptors.

But most importantly they all nailed one very important detail: customer service.In a business era where technology makes experiences fast, feedback immediate and reviews viral, failing to make your customer happy can have a serious consequence on a company’s success.

In a business era where technology makes experiences fast, feedback immediate and reviews viral, failing to make your customer happy can have a serious consequence on a company’s success.

Black Economy Taskforce | The Hon Kelly O’Dwyer MP

Australians need to have confidence in our tax system.Nothing makes

Nothing makes fair minded Australians angrier than having to pay more tax as a result of someone else not paying the tax that they are supposed to pay.

That is why Turnbull Government has already acted to close loopholes for multinational tax avoidance, strengthened the powers of the Australian Taxation Office and doubled penalties on large companies that are ripping off the Australian taxpayer. In addition to our thin capitalisation changes and our announced new diverted profits tax, these changes make Australia one of the toughest countries in the world on multinational tax avoidance.

Former employee: ‘Uber is spying on you’

A FORMER forensic investigator for taxi start-up Uber claims people’s personal information is not safe despite assurances passengers are protected from spying.

Samuel Ward Spangenberg claims he was fired from the company after raising security concerns and other ethical breaches reportedly taking place at Uber.

1 in 6 Aussies start businesses because they can’t find employment

A new study from Xero has revealed our motivations for starting businesses. New research from online accounting provider Xero shows that nearly one in six Australians (16%) start their own businesses out of necessity rather than desire. These Australians were spurred to start their own business after difficulty finding employment due to language or age barriers as well as being held back by disabilities and lack of skills.

Reckon heralds milestone $1 million in loans to small business

Accounting software provider Reckon is heralding a strong year and a milestone with its new Loans platform, in partnership with online lender Prospa, funding over $1 million in loans to small businesses.

Reckon says the success of Loans proves the online lending market is growing at an extraordinary pace, with  SME’s receiving a fast and simple service with approvals and funding of loans from $5,000 to $250,000 available within one business day.

Another Global Tech Company Chooses Victoria

Texas-based AgileCraft is the latest global tech company to call Victoria home, announcing it will open its Asia Pacific headquarters in Melbourne early next year, creating up to 60 new jobs.

The company specialises in simplifying software for large organisations. It plans to establish a software development hub in Victoria by 2018, adding extensive expertise to Victoria’s booming digital tech sector.

Start-ups leading SME business confidence, revenue growth, says MYOB

Australia’s small business owners remain relatively optimistic about their businesses in the face of a slowdown in the economy and amid talk of a looming recession, according to a new survey that shows that many SMEs, led by start-ups, have increased revenues over the course of this year.

According to the latest MYOB bi-annual business monitor of 1000 small business owners, 26% expect the economy to improve over the next year, with a further 33% expecting it to remain the same.

ASIC lets start-ups out of sandbox

The corporate regulator will today release its eagerly anticipated regulatory “sandbox” policy for fintech companies, enabling start-ups to test their products and ­services for a limited period without having to hold an Australian financial services license.

ASICAustralian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is Australia’s corporate, markets and financial services regulator. asic.gov.au released a consultation paper in June and has now ­completed its regulatory guidance, with commissioner John Price set to cut the ribbon.

New payment service to help businesses get paid quicker

PayVu aims to reduce payment settlement times from the traditional three days to just one.

Due to go live early in 2017, PayVu is a payment service that its backer says will allow businesses to receive next-day settlement of payments.

SMEs ask ATO to pay their bills after third day of business portal outage: “You have destroyed Christmas”

Tax professionals and business owners have been left stranded by an outage of the Australian Taxation Office’s systems that began on Sunday afternoon and has continued into Wednesday morning.

One Queensland small business, Tax Invest Accounting in Helensville, told SmartCompany the outage has even pushed back the business’s planned Christmas closure by a week.

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