News Pulse for October 11, 2017

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

Airtasker raises $33m to launch into the UK

Australia’s largest online jobs marketplace, Airtasker, has completed a $33 million funding round to bankroll the company’s first overseas foray, with an expansion into the UK.Airtasker had already been enjoying a milestone year, with the formation of strategic partnerships with IKEA and eBay plus the introduction of income protection insurance for its workers.

Airtasker had already been enjoying a milestone year, with the formation of strategic partnerships with IKEA and eBay plus the introduction of income protection insurance for its workers.

Open data a ‘good opportunity’ for advisers

A government-mandated requirement for banks to make their customer data available to third-party applications would allow advisers to make better and faster decisions, according to Midwinter.

Speaking to ifa, Midwinter managing director Julian Plummer said an open banking regime, currently being reviewed by Treasury, would “only be a good thing” for advisers.“

“Better data will lead to advisers making data-led decisions, particularly when it comes to advisers taking on a cashflow coach with their clients,” he said.

Is capital gains tax payable on a home used to run a small business?

Despite the income limit definition of a small business entity increasing from $2 million a year to $10 million a year from July 1, 2016, the income test for accessing the small business capital gains tax (CGT) concessions remains at $2 million.

There are in fact two ways that business owners can meet the definition of a small business to receive the CGT concessions. If a business fails the $2 million turnover test, the owners can still qualify if their net assets are valued at less than $6 million.

Why Amazon could be the small retailer’s friend

With the right preparation, the big retailer’s launch into Australia might actually help some local stores, according to a retail expert.

Much of the coverage about the impending arrival of Amazon’s retail operation in Australia has been cast in terms of doom and gloom. But there is another perspective.

Xero sees uplift in SMB fortunes as staff numbers increase

Australia’s small businesses are booming, according to a new report which reveals that there has been a 7.67% increase in employee headcount over the past 12 months.

According to accounting software provider Xero, all states experienced employment growth in small businesses year-on-year to August 2017, with small businesses in Victoria employing fastest and experiencing net employment growth of 8.6%.

New SME political party to contest election

A new political party has its sights set on providing a proper voice for SMEs in government, with its founder criticising career politicians for toying with the livelihoods of business owners.

Angela Vithoulkas, a hospitality business owner and independent councillor at the City of Sydney, unveiled plans to launch a new political party called Small Business Matters.

Australian banks and fintechs weigh in on open banking regime

Adapting the existing regulatory framework concerning privacy and introducing a new framework that supports open banking and economy-wide open data are necessary precursors to the successful implementation of the open banking regime, according to the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ).

In its submission to the government’s review into open banking in Australia , ANZ suggests that open banking be underpinned by a new “Data Act” that covers what is missing in the Privacy Act 1988 and establishes a regulatory and liability framework that supports economy-wide open data, as it pertains solely to the financial sector.

Multinational tax net tightens

An estimated $3.5 billion in revenue from large corporates and multinationals is at risk to the economy, but through audit activity this will reduce to $2.5 billion, according to the Australian Taxation Office.

On Wednesday the agency is releasing the first tranche of its long-awaited highly anticipated “tax gap” figures, which focuses on 1400 corporate groups with gross income of over $250 million.

Red tape is an anchor that holds back small business | The Hon Scott Morrison MP

Small business owners and their workers now have compelling reasons to be more confident about there being better days ahead.

A brighter picture is emerging within our economy. Amid a flurry of positive economic news, jobs growth is running at record highs, exports are up, new business investment is finally beginning to increase and so is Government investment in new infrastructure, such as roads, runways and rail.

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

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