News Pulse for August 28, 2017

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

Tech start-up boom puts Queensland in second place nationally

Move over Bill Gates — there are some new kids on the tech start-ups block, and a growing number are coming from Queensland.

The latest data from Startup Muster, which conducts the largest survey of the Australian start-up ecosystem, said Queensland had overtaken Victoria in the percentage of tech start-ups and now sits second after New South Wales.

How AUSTRAC and small business can benefit from CBA scandal

Thank you to Chanticleer (“Hard questions for AUSTRAC”, August 25) for highlighting the hitherto silence around AUSTRAC’s role in the CBA anti-money laundering fiasco.

While there will doubtless be much internal and external scrutiny of AUSTRAC’s competence, I am quite certain that they will simply complain that they are under resourced! The second certainty is that the government will accede to some review’s entreaties and provide more resources, no doubt funded by an increased levy on industry participants! (This, of course, is not a tax.)

COSBOA, BCA sign cooperation deal to dispel “David and Goliath” narrative between big and small businesses

The Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBOA Council of Small Business Australia) and the Business Council of Australia (BCA) will today sign a memorandum of understanding to foster cooperation between the two business groups and to jointly advocate for policies in areas of mutual interest, including tax reform.

In this article, COSBOA Council of Small Business Australia chief executive Peter Strong and BCA chief executive Jennifer Westacott explain why small and big businesses need each other, and why the two groups are committing to “eschewing the petty conflict of the past”.

‘Gee, it’s going to be hard’: Tax commissioner casts doubt on Labor’s plan to tax trusts

Labor’s plan to tax discretionary trusts at a flat 30 per cent rate is “a really difficult nut”, according to tax commissioner Chris Jordan.

Mr Jordan was responding to concerns raised by Paul Nielsen, chairman of the Council of Small Business of Australia, about the potential impact of Labor’s policy on small business owners.

Shorten says Labor not targeting small business on trusts

Opposition Leader Bill ShortenHon Bill Shorten MP,  Federal Member for Maribyrnong Leader of the Opposition from 13.10.13 says Labor will co-operate with small businesses but will still push ahead with its plan to limit the company tax cut and tax trusts at a flat rate of 30 per cent.

“The best contribution I can make for small business is to enable small business to pursue their own opportunities. We do it by a mindset of cooperation,” Mr Shorten told the Vodafone National Small Business Summit on Friday.

Labor ‘run by unions, apparatchiks’

Malcolm TurnbullThe Hon. Malcolm Turnbull MP, Federal Member for Wentworth Prime Minister from 15.9.15 has warned that Labor MPs do not have the necessary life experience to understand small business issues, arguing the Opposition is run by former trade union officials and political apparatchiks.

The Prime Minister said the lack of business experience on the Labor benches was one of the reasons why the Rudd government had “mishandled” the global financial crisis and warned the party had only drifted further to the Left under Mr Shorten’s leadership.

Bill Shorten defends plans to tax trusts and takes aim at high energy prices, slow internet speeds 

Opposition leader Bill ShortenHon Bill Shorten MP,  Federal Member for Maribyrnong Leader of the Opposition from 13.10.13 has defended his controversial plan to tax discretionary trusts at a flat 30% and placed energy prices, internet speeds, and skill shortages in his crosshairs.

Speaking this morning at the Council of Small Business’ National Small Business Summit in Melbourne, Shorten said he was hoping to dispel the myths that Labor’s plan for a minimum 30% tax rate for distributions on discretionary trust structures, if it were to gain power, would could widespread damage to small businesses, saying he has “no interest in tearing the system down”.

Bain MYOB block trade eyed

The market is bracing itself for a major block trade today as private equity firm Bain Capital is expected to sell shares in MYOB after already divesting a 16 per cent interest earlier this year for $355 million.

Bain Capital floated the $2.3 billion accounting software firm ( MYO ) in 2015 but retained a 56 per cent stake in the business.

Big business gets a new lobbying ally: small business

Faced with an increasingly militant union movement and the possibility of a federal Labor government, the two main small and big-business lobby groups hope that their new alliance will be able to turn around anti-business sentiment.

The Business Council of Australia and the Council of Small Business Australia plan to work together on important policy areas, engage in joint government and public lobbying, and resolve economy-wide problems between small and big business.

Double Digit Yield Opportunity – SME Lending and Fintech

The SME Alternative Finance (AltFi) lending market is gaining momentum in the Australian market. We are lagging the US and UK markets by about 4 years, however, the growth inflection point is near in the domestic market. There are opportunities for double digit yields on the debt, whilst supporting the backbone of the Australian Economy, SMEs. This piece provides an overview of the market.

Why Chris Jordan wants small business owners’ dealings with the ATO to be like going to the dentist 

Australia’s Commissioner of Taxation Chris Jordan is on a mission to make small business owners’ interactions with the taxation office like visiting the dentist.

Recalling a conversation he had with his wife when he first started in his role, Jordan told the Council of Small Business of Australia’s National Small Business Summit on Thursday afternoon that for many people, visiting the dentist is something “you never really want to do … but you know at some point you have to”.

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

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