News Pulse for September 14, 2017

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

Xero HQ partners with apps to deliver digital accounting suite

Xero has announced its next iteration of Xero HQ, launching a curated set of third-party apps for accounting and bookkeeping practices.

With a select number of app partners, Xero HQ will offer accountants and bookkeepers the tools to build a growing digital practice.

Xero drops biggest number of products in its history

Cloud accounting software platform Xero has launched the biggest collection of products in the company’s 11-year history, including a partnership that promises to offer automated marketing for accounting firms, an educational learning platform for high schools, universities and businesses and a complete re-thinking of Xero Expenses.

The features have consumed much of the company’s growing research and development spend, which is 41 per cent of revenue.

THE UNTOLD STORY: How Xero took a band name and changed accounting for a million companies

When Xero was planning to list on New Zealand’s stock exchange through its initial public offering ten years ago, there was a gag in Kiwi financial circles about the company which said it aimed to upend the accounting industry.

“Xero,” they’d say, “the first IPO named after their revenues.”

Fake Xero, MYOB, QuickBooks emails distributing malware

The list of well-known brands used as camouflage by malware distributors continues to grow.

During the last few months we’ve seen malware distributed under the guise of bills from EnergyAustralia , ASICAustralian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is Australia’s corporate, markets and financial services regulator. asic.gov.au , Origin Energy , and TransurbaReserve Bank of Australia www.rba.gov.aun’s GO Via operation .

Now there’s somewhat belated news of a campaign taking advantage of Xero’s substantial customer base.

Intuit and Google work together to power Australian small business prosperity – Media Releases – CSO | The Resource for Data Security Executives

At the Google Cloud Summit in Sydney today, Intuit Australia and Google announced their new integrated technology to enable seamless invoicing via Gmail.

The Google Calendar App now works in conjunction with QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Online Accountant, enabling small businesses to streamline their financial processes, better manage their finances and cash flow, increase payment times and improve time efficiencies.

SMEs dealing with red tape burdens and facing big business challenges

Australian SMEs continue to feel the cumulative weight of red tape burdens, while dealing with big businesses remains a key impediment to success, recent NAB research has revealed.

In a survey of 808 small and medium businesses with annual turnover between $100,000 and $50 million, NAB found 44% of SMEs don’t fully understand the way the tax system that applies to their business, with 69% stating that dealing with red tape requires a lot of effort.

Four areas Australia should focus on to lead in the coming fintech boom

If Australia wants to lead the next wave of fintech innovation, it needs the next generation of start-ups to be successful.

Although the federal government and the corporate sector are on board, it will take more than general support for Australia’s fintech scene to mature competitively.

SMEs and BAS: the consequences of late lodgement

One of the biggest mistakes some SMEs make is putting off lodging their quarterly BAS returns. For those who do their own books, there are a number of reasons for this – they get caught up in the day-to-day running of their business or the person who has been doing their books for them is no longer available. While some business owners have a laissez-faire attitude to lodging their BAS returns, the consequences for late lodgement can be severe.

We regularly see SMEs who are one, two or three BAS returns behind and in more serious cases, those who are five or more BAS returns behind. The ATO Australian Taxation Office has an escalation process for late lodgement of BAS returns, with the first step being a notice to the business owner and the last step being a summons to court. SMEs should also be aware that as the process escalates, it can trigger an audit.

Tips, comments or suggestions? Let me know in the comments, send me an email or tweet me @simeonduncan.

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