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8167.0 - Selected Characteristics of Australian Business, 2011-12 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 19/09/2013   
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BUSINESS MARKETS AND COMPETITION


GEOGRAPHIC MARKETS IN WHICH BUSINESSES SOLD GOODS OR SERVICES

Businesses were asked to identify in which geographic markets they sold their goods or services during the year ended 30 June 2012. There were four options: local (the immediate area, town or city in which the business is located), outside of local area but within the state/territory, outside of state/territory but within Australia, and overseas. Multiple responses could be provided.

Geographic markets in which businesses sold goods or services, by employment size(a)(b), 2011-12

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

Local(c)
80.0
83.9
81.5
79.7
81.3
Outside of local area but within the state/territory
36.0
41.5
50.5
66.4
39.0
Outside of state/territory but within Australia
21.5
25.1
37.1
65.4
24.1
Overseas
5.8
7.6
14.7
33.1
7.2

(a) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(b) Businesses could report more than one geographic market.
(c) The local market is defined as 'the immediate area, town or city in which the business is located'.


More than three times as many businesses sold their goods or services in their local geographic market (81%) than outside of state/territory but within Australia (24%). Almost two in three businesses with 200 or more persons employed reported selling goods or services outside of state/territory but within Australia (65%), compared with just over one in five businesses with 0-4 persons employed (22%). Across all employment size ranges, businesses were least likely to report that they sold goods or services in overseas markets (7% overall). A third of businesses with 200 or more persons employed reported that they sold goods or services in this geographic market. Businesses in this employment size range were almost six times as likely as businesses with 0-4 persons employed to report that they sold goods or services in overseas markets (6%).

Businesses in the Information media and telecommunications industry were the most likely to have reported selling goods or services outside of state/territory but within Australia (55%) or overseas (26%). Agriculture, forestry and fishing recorded the highest proportion of businesses that sold goods or services outside of local area but within state/territory (55%), while businesses in Accommodation and food services were most likely to have sold goods or services in their local geographic market (94%).


Innovation-active businesses were almost three times as likely to sell goods or services overseas as non innovation-active businesses (11% compared to 4%) and more than twice as likely to sell goods or services outside of state/territory but within Australia (33% compared to 16%).

Further data relating to geographic markets in which businesses sold goods or services can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


MAIN SOURCE OF BUSINESS INCOME

Businesses were asked to identify their main source of income from the sale of goods or services during the year ended 30 June 2012. A list of sources was provided, however, definitions for large businesses or organisations and small and/or medium businesses or organisations were not.

Main source of business income, by employment size(a)(b)(c), 2011-12

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

Australian sources
Government organisations
5.0
5.4
7.0
13.8
5.3
Large businesses or organisations
16.5
16.1
28.3
48.5
17.5
Small and/or medium businesses or organisations
40.3
34.9
32.5
14.8
37.9
General public
43.8
50.2
40.7
30.0
45.4
Overseas sources
1.7
1.4
3.2
6.2
1.8

(a) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(b) Businesses were asked to identify their main source of income from the sales of goods or services and were asked to nominate one source only.
(c) The sum of the component items may not equal 100% due to rounding and/or provision of multiple responses. Refer to Explanatory Note 29 and the Quality Declaration.


Almost half of all businesses reported the general public as their main source of income from the sale of goods or services (45%), while almost two in five businesses reported small and/or medium businesses or organisations (38%) as their main source.

Businesses with 200 or more persons employed were most likely to report large businesses or organisations (48%) as their main source of income from the sale of goods or services. Businesses within this employment size range were also the most likely to report that government organisations (14%) were their main source of income.

Businesses in the Mining industry were the most likely to report their main source of business income was from overseas sources (14%). This was more than twice the proportion reported by businesses in Information media and telecommunications (6%) who were next most likely to do so. More than 90% of businesses within Accommodation and food services reported their main source of income was from the general public.

Further data relating to the main source of business income can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


MAIN SUPPLIER OF GOODS OR SERVICES

Businesses were asked to identify their main supplier of goods or services for the year ended 30 June 2012. A list of suppliers was provided, however, definitions for large businesses or organisations and small and/or medium businesses or organisations were not.

Main supplier of goods or services, by employment size(a)(b)(c), 2011-12

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

Australian suppliers
Government organisations
1.7
1.7
1.6
1.7
1.7
Large businesses or organisations
14.8
19.1
23.6
47.9
17.0
Small and/or medium businesses or organisations
59.6
66.7
63.2
39.8
61.9
Overseas suppliers
5.0
6.6
7.9
11.3
5.7
Not applicable
20.8
9.9
9.2
6.3
16.5

(a) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(b) Businesses were asked to identify their main supplier of goods or services and to nominate one supplier only.
(c) The sum of the component items may not equal 100% due to rounding and/or provision of multiple responses. Refer to Explanatory Note 29 and the Quality Declaration.


Consistent with previous results, small and/or medium businesses or organisations were the most commonly reported main supplier of goods or services (62%). Businesses were least likely to report government organisations as their main supplier (2%).

With the exception of businesses with 200 or more persons employed, which were most likely to report large businesses or organisations as their main supplier of goods or services (48%), the remaining employment size ranges were all most likely to report small and/or medium businesses or organisations as their main supplier. This ranged from 60% of businesses with 0-4 persons employed to 67% of businesses with 5-19 persons employed.

Businesses within Transport, postal and warehousing were the most likely to report government organisations as their main supplier of goods or services (6%), followed by Health care and social assistance (4%). Businesses within Wholesale trade were the most likely to report overseas suppliers (37%) as their main supplier of goods or services.

Innovation-active businesses were twice as likely as non innovation-active businesses to identify their main supplier of goods or services as overseas suppliers (8% compared to 4%).

Further data relating to the main supplier of goods or services can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


RELIANCE ON CLIENTS, CUSTOMERS AND BUYERS

Businesses were asked whether they relied on a small number of clients, customers or buyers to generate a significant proportion of their income. There was no accompanying definition of what constituted a small number of clients, customers or buyers or what constituted a significant proportion of their income. Businesses that reported a reliance on a small number of clients, customers or buyers were also asked to rate the likely impact on the business if they had lost one of these.

Reliance on clients, customers or buyers, by employment size(a), 2011-12

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

Businesses that relied on a small number of clients, customers or buyers(a)
55.5
40.6
42.3
32.6
49.9
Potential impact on business income from the loss of one of these clients, customers, or buyers(b)(c)
Little or no impact on the business' income as would have been relatively easy to find replacement client, customer or buyer
33.6
27.7
29.9
16.8
31.8
Moderate to large impact on the business' income as would have been difficult to find replacement client, customer or buyer
50.0
58.9
55.7
74.8
52.6
Extremely large impact which would have forced the business to close
16.7
14.3
14.4
8.6
15.9

(a) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(b) Proportions are of businesses that relied on a small number of clients, customers or buyers to generate a significant proportion of their income, in each output category.
(c) The sum of the component items may not equal 100% due to rounding and/or provision of multiple responses. Refer to Explanatory Note 29 and the Quality Declaration.


Half of all businesses reported a reliance on a small number of clients, customers or buyers to generate a significant proportion of their income. Of these businesses, 53% reported a moderate to large impact on the business' income if one of these clients was lost. The proportion of businesses that reported an extremely large impact on the business' income if one of their clients was lost decreased with each successive employment size range, from 17% of businesses with 0-4 persons employed to 9% of businesses with 200 or more persons employed. Although businesses with 0-4 persons employed were the most likely to have reported an extremely large impact on the business' income (17%) they were also the most likely to have reported there would be little or no impact on the business' income if one of these clients was lost (34%).

Construction and Professional, scientific and technical services recorded the highest proportion of businesses with a reliance on a small number of clients, customers or buyers (both 63%), while businesses within Retail trade were the least likely to report a reliance on a small number of clients, customers or buyers (24%).

Businesses within Agriculture, forestry and fishing were most likely to report there would be little or no impact on the business' income if they lost a client, customer or buyer (52%), while businesses in Transport, postal and warehousing were most likely to report an extremely large impact on the business' income (36%) in the event of losing one of these clients.

Further data relating to reliance on clients, customers and buyers can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


AMOUNT OF COMPETITION EXPERIENCED BY BUSINESSES

All businesses were asked to report the amount of competition they experienced during the year ended 30 June 2012. They were asked to select one of four options; none/captive market/no effective competition, one or two competitors, three or four competitors or five or more competitors.

Amount of competition experienced by businesses, by employment size(a)(b)(c), 2011-12

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

Amount of competition experienced by businesses:
none/captive market/no effective competition
17.1
10.9
10.5
6.6
14.7
one or two competitors
11.8
11.0
8.6
8.5
11.3
three or four competitors
10.1
17.3
15.7
19.1
12.8
five or more competitors
61.2
61.0
65.3
65.9
61.5

(a) Proportions are of all businesses in each output category.
(b) Businesses were asked to identify which one of four options best described the degree of competition experienced during the year.
(c) The sum of the component items may not equal 100% due to rounding and/or provision of multiple responses. Refer to Explanatory Note 29 and the Quality Declaration.


Overall, 62% of businesses identified having experienced five or more competitors, while 15% experienced none/captive market/no effective competition.

Businesses with 0-4 persons employed were more than twice as likely as businesses with 200 or more persons employed to experience none/captive market/no effective competition (17% compared to 7%). In contrast, businesses with 200 or more persons employed were almost twice as likely as businesses with 0-4 persons employed to experience three or four competitors (19% compared to 10%).

The Agriculture, forestry and fishing and Mining industries were most likely to record none/captive market/no effective competition (40% and 34% respectively). Almost three quarters of businesses in Financial and insurance services reported that they had five or more competitors (73%).

Further data relating to amount of competition experienced by businesses can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


SIZE OF COMPETITORS

Businesses that reported that they had competitors were asked to identify the size of the majority of their competition during the year ended 30 June 2012. They were instructed to select one of three options: businesses that were smaller in size than this business, about the same size as this business and larger in size than this business. A definition of what determined the size of competitors was not provided.

Size of competitors, by employment size(a)(b)(c), 2011-12

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

Competitors which were:
smaller in size than this business
6.8
10.8
14.1
14.6
8.7
same size as this business
51.7
57.7
57.8
55.2
54.1
larger in size than this business
46.8
36.2
32.2
32.1
42.2

(a) Proportions are of businesses reporting amount of competition in each output category.
(b) Businesses were asked to identify the size of their competition and were asked to nominate one only.
(c) The sum of the component items may not equal 100% due to rounding and/or provision of multiple responses. Refer to Explanatory Note 29 and the Quality Declaration.


Of those businesses reporting they had some form of competition, over half indicated that the majority of their competitors were about the same size as this business (54%), while over two in five reported that the majority were larger in size than this business (42%). The propensity of businesses to report that the majority of their competitors were smaller in size than this business increased with each successive employment size range, from 7% of businesses with 0-4 persons employed to 15% of businesses with 200 or more persons employed.

Businesses in Arts and recreation services were the most likely to report competitors smaller in size than this business (12%), while businesses in Financial and insurance services had the highest proportion of competitors larger in size than this business (62%).

Further data relating to size of competitors experienced by businesses can be accessed via the Downloads tab.


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