8167.0 - Selected Characteristics of Australian Business, 2013-14 Quality Declaration 
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 20/08/2015   
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BUSINESS FINANCE

Business finance sought

All businesses were asked if they sought any debt and/or equity finance during the year ended 30 June 2014. If finance had been sought, the business was also asked to identify the types of finance and the status of finance sought (i.e. whether it had been obtained, not obtained or was still in progress). For the purposes of the Business Characteristics Survey (BCS), debt finance includes any finance the business must repay, and equity finance includes finance provided in exchange for a share in the ownership of the business. Businesses could report more than one type of finance and more than one type of status.


Business finance sought, by employment size, by type and status(a), 2013-14

0-4 persons
5-19 persons
20-199 persons
200 or more persons
Total
%
%
%
%
%

Businesses that sought debt or equity finance(b)
13.0
20.0
27.3
30.6
16.3
Type of finance sought by businesses(c)(d)
Debt
94.5
92.5
90.6
97.3
93.3
Equity
26.8
28.6
25.9
28.9
27.4
Debt finance that was:(e)
obtained
83.4
84.2
87.6
96.2
84.4
not obtained
7.8
4.1
3.3
1.4
5.8
in progress(f)
12.5
13.9
9.9
3.4
12.6
Equity finance that was:(g)
obtained
^38.3
^37.0
^57.2
60.4
40.3
not obtained
^56.3
^51.1
^35.9
36.8
^51.6
in progress(f)
5.5
^15.2
^9.7
3.6
9.7

^ estimate has a relative standard error of 10% to less than 25% and should be used with caution.
(a) Businesses were asked to identify if they had sought any debt or equity finance and, if so, the type of finance sought and whether it was obtained.
(b) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(c) Proportions are of all businesses that sought finance (either debt or equity) in each output category.
(d) Businesses could identify more than one type of finance and more than one status.
(e) Proportions are of all businesses that sought debt finance in each output category.
(f) As at the end of the reference period, 30 June 2014.
(g) Proportions are of all businesses that sought equity finance in each output category.


Overall, 16% of businesses sought debt or equity finance in 2013-14. Of these, businesses were most likely to seek debt finance (93%). Of those businesses seeking debt finance, 84% reported debt finance that was obtained. In contrast, of the 27% of businesses that sought equity finance, 40% reported that equity finance was obtained.

Innovation-active businesses (22%) were twice as likely to seek debt or equity finance than non innovation-active businesses (11%).

Further statistics relating to business finance sought can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


Reasons for seeking debt or equity finance

Businesses that sought debt or equity finance during 2013-14 were asked the reasons for seeking finance, regardless of whether the finance was obtained. Businesses were provided with a list of options and could select more than one reason.


Reasons for seeking debt or equity finance, by employment size(a), 2013-14

0-4 persons
5-19 persons
20-199 persons
200 or more persons
Total
%
%
%
%
%

Businesses that sought debt or equity finance(b)
13.0
20.0
27.3
30.6
16.3
Reasons for seeking debt or equity finance(c)(d):
Ensure survival of business
33.0
35.0
23.8
12.5
32.3
Maintain short-term cash flow or liquidity
41.8
39.9
51.1
40.5
42.3
Replacement of:
IT hardware
10.2
8.1
9.3
^17.9
9.4
other equipment or machinery
33.1
23.0
33.8
26.9
29.3
Upgrade of:
IT hardware or software
13.2
7.1
15.1
13.2
11.2
other equipment or machinery
10.3
12.7
15.2
18.7
11.9
Purchase of additional:
IT hardware or software
6.3
3.5
7.6
^18.1
5.6
other equipment or machinery
16.9
19.1
21.2
25.0
18.4
assets not related to expansion
4.2
5.5
7.3
16.5
5.2
Expand business
13.7
20.8
25.6
^49.0
18.3
To introduce new or improved goods, services, processes or methods
8.8
10.7
10.1
^20.2
9.8
Other reasons businesses sought debt or equity finance
13.3
11.0
6.5
8.2
11.5

^ estimate has a relative standard error of 10% to less than 25% and should be used with caution.
(a) Businesses that sought debt or equity finance were asked the reason(s) for seeking finance.
(b) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(c) Proportions are of all businesses that sought finance (either debt or equity) in each output category.
(d) Businesses could identify more than one reason.


The most common reason for businesses to seek debt or equity finance was to maintain short term cash flow or liquidity (42%). The least common reason was the purchase of additional assets not related to expansion (5%).

Businesses with 200 or more persons employed were the most likely to report seeking finance to expand their business (49%). Businesses with 20-199 persons employed were most likely to report seeking finance to maintain short term cash flow or liquidity (51%).

Businesses in the Mining industry were the most likely to seek finance to maintain short term cash flow or liquidity (62%). Businesses in the Agriculture, forestry and fishing industry were the most likely to seek finance to ensure survival of business (44%).

Innovation-active businesses were more likely to seek debt or equity finance for the upgrade of IT hardware or software (14%) and to expand business (22%) than non innovation-active businesses (5% and 12% respectively).

Further statistics relating to reasons for seeking debt or equity finance can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


Government financial assistance

Businesses were asked whether they received any government financial assistance (excluding tax deductions for normal business expenses) during the year ended 30 June 2014. Government organisations include federal, state/territory and local governments.


Government financial assistance received, by employment size(a)(b), 2013-14

0-4 persons
5-19 persons
20-199 persons
200 or more persons
Total

Type of government financial assistance(c)
Grants %
1.9
4.3
10.2
25.3
3.4
Ongoing funding %
0.4
2.0
5.3
14.9
1.3
Subsidies %
1.6
2.5
5.7
16.0
2.3
Tax concessions %
1.0
2.3
5.3
18.7
1.9
Rebates %
3.2
5.5
10.8
18.8
4.6
Other government financial assistance received %
0.8
1.4
1.5
3.3
1.1
Any government financial assistance received %
8.0
14.8
29.6
57.2
12.0
No government financial assistance received %
92.0
85.2
70.4
42.8
88.0

(a) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(b) Government includes federal, state/territory and local government.
(c) Businesses could identify more than one type of financial assistance.


Overall, 12% of businesses received some form of Australian government assistance. Rebates were the most common type of government financial assistance (5%).

The proportion of businesses that received at least one type of government financial assistance increased with each successive employment size range, from 8% of businesses with 0-4 persons employed to 57% of businesses with 200 or more persons employed.

Businesses in Arts and recreation services were the most likely to have received at least one type of government financial assistance (25%); this includes being the most likely to have received grants (16%). Businesses in the Mining industry were the most likely to have received tax concessions (9%), and rebates (14%). Businesses in Health care and social assistance were the most likely to have received ongoing funding (12%).

Further statistics relating to government financial assistance can be accessed via the Downloads tab.